Great Britain

Royal Family LIVE: Queen to tip Kate to fill Prince Harry's shoes in seal of approval

THE Queen is looking to Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, to fill the void left by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's abrupt departure from the Firm, and is reportedly planning to hand her sporting patronages left vacant in yet another sign of approval.

Prince William and Kate’s kiss compared to Diana and Charles

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were stripped of their patronages and honorary positions when they stepped down from their senior royal roles. While they had initially planned to continue their work with charities and organisations on behalf of the monarch, she firmly slapped down their half-in half-out work model. And now, following more than a year of cancelled engagements due to the Covid pandemic, Her Majesty is looking to get things back on track by appointing Kate as patron of the Rugby Football Union (RFU) and the Rugby Football League (RFL).

The positions previously held by Harry are set to be announced in the coming months, according to The Sunday Times.

The Queen will likely go public with her plan to usher Kate in to fill Harry's shoes before the rugby league World Cup in October and November.

The duchess, 39, is a well-known lover of the outdoors and has long championed the benefits of sport for physical and mental health.

Growing up in the Berkshire village of Bucklebury, Kate was accustomed to rugby and would often watch games with her sports-mad family.

kate middleton

The Queen is set to hand Prince Harry's former patronages to Kate (Image: GETTY)

Her younger sister Pippa delved into the family's love for the sport in a 2014 article for Vanity Fair magazine.

She said: “Picture the scene. It’s Saturday afternoon in the Middleton household. The atmosphere is heavy with expectation.

"All eyes are on the television ... we’re watching England play Ireland in the 1996 Five Nations Rugby tournament ... Rugby was a big thing in our family, and the focal point was international matches.

"We’d plan our weekends around the matches ... If we lost, my dad would be in a state of despair for the rest of the afternoon, as if he’d actually lost the game himself.”

However, Kate won't be the first in the Cambridge household to hold a patronage with the sport as Prince William is patron of the Welsh Rugby Union.

Discussions between the Queen, members of her family and royal aides on who should fill the remaining patronages stripped from Harry and Meghan are continuing.

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Royal Family tree

Royal Family tree (Image: EXPRESS)

7.49am update: 'How cute!' Princess Eugenie’s sweet family nickname unveiled in Fergie photoshoot

Princess Eugenie's sweet family nickname has been unveiled during Sarah Ferguson's latest photoshoot.

Appearing in the August 2021 issue of Town & Country magazine, the Duchess of York, 61, is pictured posing on a swinging rope seat suspended under a grand tree in a stunning garden. In a touching tribute, the wooden seat is engraved with the names of her daughter and son-in-law.

But eagle-eyed royal fans have been quick to point out Eugenie’s cute nickname used in the shot.

‘Euge & Jack’ can be made out inscribed beneath Fergie - acting as a touching tribute to the couple who recently welcomed their first child earlier this year.

One twitter user who spotted the heartwarming tribute said: “How cute! In a picture taken of The Duchess of York at Royal Lodge for her new interview for @TandCmag she is standing on a swing engraved with ‘Euge & Jack’.”

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