Why Kate didn't receive this traditional royal honour on her birthday

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  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge
    Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge
    Wife of Prince William, Duke of Cambridge
Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

While for many of us, birthdays are celebrated with a bottle of prosecco and a Collin the Caterpillar cake, when it comes to the Royal Family things are very different indeed. Take Kate Middleton, for example, who yesterday celebrated her 40th birthday. To mark the milestone, Kensington Palace commissioned three (very regal) portraits of the Duchess of Cambridge, and she also took to Instagram to share a sweet message with her fans. But, there was one traditional royal element that was missing from Kate's big day.

As it turns out, Westminster Abbey traditionally rings its bell on all royal birthdays – that is, until COVID put an end to the honour. Sadly, due to pandemic related financial issues, the ringing of Westminster Abbey's bells will now be reserved for only the most special of special royal birthdays, the Queen's and Prince Charles' to be exact.

"The Abbey bells can be heard ringing out before services and in celebration of church festivals," a Westminster Abbey spokesperson told HELLO!, before adding that "The bells have also traditionally been rung to mark the birthdays of senior members of the Royal Family."

However, the spokesperson continued: "Due to the financial challenges posed to the Abbey by the COVID-19 pandemic, and in consultation with Buckingham Palace, the bells will now ring only for the birthdays of HM The Queen and HRH The Prince of Wales."

In lieu of the traditional bell ringing, perhaps a slice of Collin will be on the royal cards after all? At the very least, we know Kate herself will be tucking into some birthday cake to celebrate turning 40.

Speaking about her passion for baking back in 2019, on an episode of Mary Berry’s A Berry Royal Christmas, the Duchess said: "I love making the cake. It’s become a bit of a tradition that I stay up 'til midnight with ridiculous amounts of cake mix and icing and I make far too much. But I love it."

And it seems Prince George has followed in his mum's footsteps when it comes to cake baking, as seen in this photo which shows the little royal taking part in 'Stir Up Sunday' with Prince William, Prince Charles and the Queen. "Four generations of the Royal Family 🎄 together at Christmas," the caption read.

We wonder what kind of cake Prince George and his mum whipped up to celebrate her 40th birthday?

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