The poignant reason Kate Middleton and Prince William missed yesterday's royal event

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Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

If your Instagram feed is currently full of fancy hats and bottles of prosecco being sipped in the sunshine, then you're not alone as yesterday marked the return of Royal Ascot. But, whilst plenty of famous faces and royal family members were in attendance – including Prince Charles and his wife Camilla Parker Bowles, as well as Zara and Mike Tindall and Princess Beatrice – two royals who usually always make an appearance at Royal Ascot were noticeably missing: Kate Middleton and Prince William.

With the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge both not in attendance at the event, plenty of Ascot go-ers couldn't help but question why the couple had skipped the royal event. But, it turns out there's a very poignant reason why Kate and William weren't at Royal Ascot, as they were attending a memorial for those who lost their lives at Grenfell – a 2017 tower block fire that sadly caused the deaths of 72 people.

To mark the fifth anniversary of the tragedy, locals gathered at a multi-faith memorial service in West London on 14 June and were joined by the Duke and Duchess who were there to pay their respect.

Photo credit: Chris J Ratcliffe - Getty Images
Photo credit: Chris J Ratcliffe - Getty Images

Before the service, Kate and William met privately with survivors of the blaze as well as family members of those who tragically lost their lives. Afterwards, the royals joined the congregation at the foot of Grenfell Tower where a morning service – which included prayers, readings and a choir performance – was being held. At the end, the Cambridges and those attending the memorial were invited to lay wreaths and flowers to pay tribute to those who had passed away as a result of the fire.

Speaking to The Mirror, survivor Tiago Alves said that the Cambridges' visit showed they "genuinely cared". He went on: "They were being introduced to some of the committee members. We were explaining to them what our struggles were, who we were and what we were doing.

"We were trying to give them a slice of what it was like to be us, even if it’s only for five minutes, so they can understand the reason behind why we fight the way we do and the reason why justice is so important."

Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

The survivor continued, "They said they were very supportive of what we stood for and what it was we were doing and said to keep up the good work. It’s always nice having people of that stature being able to empathise with our struggle and with our fight."

To support Grenfell United – an organisation campaigning for safe homes, justice and change – visit their website here.


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