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Kate struggled to pin shamrock to army mascot

The shamrock is a symbol of the lucky Irish - but the Duchess of Cambridge had a spot of bother when she struggled to pin the sprig to an army mascot dog in Hampshire. Kate, 33, presented the bunches of clovers to soldiers from the Irish Guards to mark St Patrick's Day.

But as she bent down to pin the sprig on the silver collar of the regiment's beloved mascot, Irish wolfhound Domhnall, it kept falling off. Quartermaster Major Paul Fagin had to step in to give the royal a hand at the ceremony in Mons Barracks, Aldershot.

The dog handler Drummer Dean Kirk said:

"It wouldn't go on his collar, we had a bit of trouble with the shamrock. The shamrock fell off."

Kate later joked about the mishap with three children who presented her with a posy of white flowers. She told eight year-old Ciara Flynn and her twin sisters Leah and Eva, both six, that it was tricky. The girls' mother Mrs Flynn, 41, whose husband Mark is company sergeant major of the regiment, said: "She spoke about giving the dog the shamrock, and said it didn't stay on for very long."

The three year-old dog, who weighs 73kg, the equivalent of 11-and-a-half stone, was treated to a sip of Guinness after the ceremony. Kate, who is due to give birth next month, beamed as she arrived at the ceremony with the Duke of Cambridge. She covered her baby bump in a chic brown coat by Catherine Walker and wore a matching brown hat by Lock & Co.

Pinned to her coat was the gold shamrock brooch which was originally presented by the Irish Guards to the Queen Mother - who traditionally led the ceremony when she was alive.

William, 32, attended the traditional parade as Colonel of the Regiment and wore a navy blue frock coat. The couple spent around an hour at the parade and chatting happily to soldiers and their families afterwards.

The Queen to unveil visitor centre at the Battle of Britain Memorial next week

Queen Elizabeth II Credit: Press Association

The Queen is to unveil the new 3.5 million visitor centre at the Battle of Britain Memorial at Capel-le-Ferne in Kent.

The site is the national memorial to The Few and the new centre will house an audio-visual experience to guide visitors through the story of the Battle in 1940.

The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will tour the new building during a 45-minute visit to the cliff top site on March 26. Pupils from Capel-le-Ferne Primary School will be completing worksheets on the Battle of Britain. They will also meet some of the last remaining members of ''The Few'', the pilots and aircrew fought who put paid to any plan for an enemy invasion by defeating the Luftwaffe in dogfights high above the skies of Kent and Sussex.

There will be will be a flypast by a Spitfire, Hurricane and Typhoon, which The Queen will watch from the balcony of the new Cockpit Café.

Wills and Kate in Aldershot for the Irish Guards' St Patrick's Day Parade

Kate and William at the Irish Guards' St Patrick's Day Parade Credit: ITV Meridian

Their Royal Highnesses, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are the guests of honour at this year's Irish Guards' St Patrick's Day Parade in Aldershot.

Her Royal Highness will once again present the traditional sprigs of shamrock to the Officers and Guardsmen on Tuesday 17th 200 soldiers will march on to the parade square at their base, Mons Barracks marching behind the Band of the Irish Guards; they will, of course, be accompanied by Domhnall their Irish Wolf Hound regimental mascot, who will receive his own sprig of shamrock from the Duchess.

This is her last public engagement for the duchess prior to the birth of her second child.


Britannia to set sail for maiden voyage

Maiden voyage for World's largest cruise liner Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The world's largest cruise liner will set off on her maiden voyage on Saturday evening. The new P+O liner will take more than 3,000 passengers to the Mediterranean, stopping off in places like Barcelona and Rome.

The ship was named buy the Queen earlier this week. Capable of carrying more than 3,600 passengers and 1,350 crew, Britannia is the largest cruise ship designed specifically for the British holiday market. Boasting 15 passenger decks, 13 bars and 13 places to eat, the £473 million Britannia has a three-tier atrium, a 936-seater theatre, four swimming pools, and a multi-million pound art collection.

Sailing from Southampton during the summer and operating from the Caribbean in the winter, Britannia will visit 57 ports in 31 countries in its first year, sailing more than 90,000 miles.

Duchess of Cambridge meets children in Margate

The Duchess of Cambridge meets children at the Turner Contemporary

The Duchess saw how the Turner Contemporary engages with the local community, she met local school children involved in an art project.

The Duchess of Cambridge meets children while touring the Turner Contemporary
Duchess of Cambridge meets school children
The Duchess tours the selfie exhibition at the Turner Contemporary
Duchess views a print at the Turner Contemporary
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