Kate Middleton ‘replaces Prince Harry as new patron of English rugby’

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The Duchess of Cambridge is taking over the role as patron of English rugby union from Prince Harry it is reported and she is the first royal to be given one of his patronages

Kate Middleton is set to become the new patron of English rugby
Kate Middleton is set to become the new patron of English rugby

Kate Middleton is to become the new patron of English rugby union, taking over the role from Prince Harry, it is reported.

The Duchess of Cambridge will reportedly be the first royal to take over one of Harry’s patronages with the announcement set to come “imminently”.

It means there will be plenty of rivalry during this year’s Six Nations championship with Prince William the patron of Welsh rugby union.

Harry walked away from royal life in 2020 with the Sussexes moving to California and he has been critical of the way he used to live in interviews with American media.

His decision to leave has seen him stripped of his patronages.

Kate is set to be the first royal to take over one of Harry’s patronages
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Harry, a keen rugby fan who also previously played the sport, was vice-patron of the RFU from 2010 to 2016 before taking over from the Queen as patron.

The 95-year-old monarch also handed him the patronage of the RFL in 2016 and carried out the draw for the forthcoming World Cup in January 2020 at the height of the “Megxit” saga.

According to the Daily Mail some suspect the Queen didn’t want to risk antagonizing her grandson.

“People just tread a bit carefully when it comes to them,” said a Daily Mail source.

But with the Six Nations Championship imminent, the need for a figurehead was said to be “pressing”.

Kate is known to be a big sports fan
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Tennis and hockey player Kate sailed from a young age and has long championed the physical and mental benefits of sports.

She is already patron of the All England Lawn and Tennis Croquet Club, the Lawn Tennis Association, SportsAid and the 1851 Trust, which works with young people.

Long before her 2011 marriage to William, Kate and her family would plan their weekends around international rugby matches.

She attended the 2015 World Cup in England and the 2017 Six Nations clash between France and Wales in Paris.

There is likely to be rivalry in the Cambridge household during the Six Nations championship
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It could also spark more of Harry’s patronages to be redistributed including the presidency of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust and the London Marathon Charitable Trust.

Buckingham Palace said in a statement in February last year: “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed to Her Majesty The Queen that they will not be returning as working members of the Royal Family.

“Following conversations with the Duke, the Queen has written confirming that in stepping away from the work of the Royal Family it is not possible to continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service.

“The honorary military appointments and Royal patronages held by the Duke and Duchess will therefore be returned to Her Majesty, before being redistributed among working members of The Royal Family.

“While all are saddened by their decision, The Duke and Duchess remain much loved members of the family.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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