Duchess of Cambridge views moving family letters at Imperial War Museum

Danielle Stacey
Royal Correspondent
Kate looks at the Weeping Window installation at the Imperial War Museum (Getty)

The Duchess of Cambridge visited Imperial War Museum London on Wednesday to view letters relating to the three brothers of her great-grandmother, Olive, all of whom fought and died in the First World War.

Kate, who wore a repeat blue Jenny Packham dress,  took some time to view the Weeping Window installation outside the museum as she arrived.

Francis Martineau Lupton, the Duchess’s great-great-grandfather, had five children. The two youngest brothers, Captain Maurice Lupton and Lieutenant Lionel M Lupton went to France within three days of each other in 1915.

Kate wore a blue Jenny Packham dress, with a Mulberry bag (Getty)

The eldest Lupton brother, Major Francis A Lupton fought with the 8th Battalion West Yorkshire Regiment in 1917. Sadly, each of the brothers was killed in action over a period of three years: Maurice in 1915, Lionel in 1916 and Francis in 1917.

Among the documents the Duchess looked at, was a telegram, dated 26 March, 1917 from Noel Middleton announcing that the body of Francis Lupton had been found.

Another was a letter of condolence sent on behalf of George V, dated 4 April 1917, offering condolences to the death of the three Lupton brothers. It says: ”The King realises that this is the third beloved son you have given to your Country’s cause, and His Majesty trusts that you may be granted strength and comfort in the further sorrow which you have been called upon to bear.”

Kate was also shown her great-grandmother Olive’s registration card. Olive and her younger sister Anne were both Voluntary Aid Detachment nurses with the British Red Cross during the War.

Before looking at the letters, Kate took a short tour of the First World War Galleries where she was shown elements of the galleries that relate to the experience of her relatives.

Her attendance comes ahead of Armistice Day on 11 November. The Queen and other members of the Royal Family join political leaders, current and ex-members of the Armed Forces and World War veterans at the annual Remembrance service, at the foot of the Cenotaph memorial.

Yesterday the Duchess and the Duke paid a visit to Basildon Sporting Village in Essex to learn how one of their projects, Coach Core, is inspiring a community with sport.