Duchess of Cambridge working more during coronavirus pandemic as Royal Family adjusts to lockdown
The Duchess of Cambridge is stepping up her workload during the coronavirus pandemic according to the court circular.
The Royal Family has been affected by the pandemic, with all engagements off for the foreseeable future and its members working from home.
The Queen has been forced to self-isolate and has been staying in Windsor Castle with her husband Prince Philip since the middle of March.
At 94 and 98 respectively, they are considered at high risk of the disease.
Although it was feared she could be out of the public eye for the longest period in her reign, the Daily Mirror reports she is determined to return to frontline duties.
Royal sources told the paper she is “more determined than ever to return when the time is right”.
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In the meantime, the public is seeing more of the other members of the Royal Family, and it appears Kate has stepped up the most.
Yahoo UK crunched the numbers from the court circular to see the differences in their roles in the last year.
Kate, 38, carried out engagements on seven days from 22 March until 12 May 2019, the equivalent period to this year’s lockdown.
But in the lockdown this year, she has carried out engagements on nine days so far.
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Her husband William matches days like for like, at 11, but some of his engagements don’t appear to be listed – for example his appearance on BBC’s Big Night In.
The Queen has fewer days of engagements listed, as would be expected during her self-isolation.
However, her workload may not be lower, as she still receives the red box from government every day.
Her television broadcasts and her Easter message are not listed in the circular, and she had two weeks without her audience with the prime minister, when Boris Johnson was in intensive care.
Charles and Camilla are slightly down on their engagements, but it’s not a surprise as last Spring saw them go on several royal tours, including a few days in Germany.
However this year, they’ve had to postpone the trips that did fill their diary. Camilla called her husband a “workaholic” and given he continued working from his desk even when he was diagnosed with COVID-19, he is likely to have duties which aren’t listed on the circular.
Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, is overtaking her husband Prince Edward on days of official work so far, and she’s been seen conducting lots of voluntary work in private too.
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She also joined up with the Duchess of Cambridge to call nurses around the world ahead of International Nurses’ Day on 12 May.
Sophie has also been featured heavily on the Royal Family instagram page, offering various tips for homeschooling resources as the majority of children learn at home.
Anne, usually the hardest working royal, has taken on fewer days of work compared to last year according to the circular, but did continue in person engagements longer than other members before lockdown.
She’s down to 10 days compared with 30 in the same period last year.
Many members of the Royal Family have virtually opened NHS Nightingale Hospitals, the field facilities set up across the country to cope with the numbers of coronavirus patients.
Coronavirus is not the only thing to impact the Royal Family’s work in the last year.
Read more: Coronavirus: Prince Charles makes donation to charity tackling pandemic in conflict zones
On 22 March 2019, a year before lockdown started in the UK, the Dukes and Duchesses of Cambridge and Sussex still worked together under one household.
Now Prince Harry and Meghan live in LA, having stepped back from royal duties.
Prince Andrew was still carrying out senior duties in 2019. A year on, he has stepped back indefinitely.
Overall, it means there are fewer names on the Court Circular this year compared to last.
Prince Harry and Meghan have carried out the types of calls and engagements with charities in the UK from their home in LA that may once have appeared on the circular, but no longer do, as they no longer represent the Queen in their work.
Yahoo UK used the court circular to work out engagement levels in 2019 and 2020. Yahoo UK counted the day as a single engagement and only counted it if the royal was present themselves, not represented by someone else. It does not include travel days.