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Royals defend Kensington palace apartment spending

The Royal Family have defended spending a seven-figure sum refurbishing the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's Kensington Palace apartment.

The Cupola room at Kensington Palace Credit: David Jensen/EMPICS Entertainment

A royal spokesman said repairs and refurbishments - reported to cost around £4 million, though this figure was not confirmed by the royal household - included "significant amount of internal building" to "return the residence to function as a living space".

The King's Staircase at Kensington Palace in London. Credit: David Jensen/EMPICS Entertainment

William and Kate's Kensington Palace apartment was designed by Sir Christopher Wren and was the home of Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon. Margaret remained there after their divorce and lived there until her death in 2002.

The living space was last refurbished in 1963.

A royal spokesman said: "This is the Duke and Duchess's one and only official residence. It is here that they plan to stay for many, many years to come."

The Presence Chamber, part of the King's State appartments at Kensington Palace. Credit: David Jensen/EMPICS Entertainment

He said William and Kate "paid privately" for all the internal furnishings, including carpets and curtains.

Read: Kate and William's home renovation to cost £4 million

Kate and William's home renovation 'to cost £4 million'

The cost of renovating the new Kensington Palace home of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge is to reach £4 million pounds, according to reports.

The taxpayer will foot the bill for extensive work on the property, including installing a new roof, overhauling the electrics and carrying out significant plumbing works.

Kensington Palace renovation works are paid for by the taxpayer. Credit: John Stillwell/PA

A royal spokesman said repairs and refurbishments - reported to cost in the region of £4 million, though this figure was not confirmed by the royal household - would also see a "significant amount of internal building" to "return the residence to function as a living space".

He said William and Kate "paid privately" for all the internal furnishings, including carpets and curtains. They were also at pains to ensure that the specification is not extravagant.

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Prince William reveals a liking for Coldplay

The Duke of Cambridge revealed he is a fan of British rockers Coldplay, during a visit to a school in East Yorkshire today.

Prince William pictured on a visit to East Yorkshire today.
Prince William pictured on a visit to East Yorkshire today. Credit: PA

When William was asked by pupils at Goole High School what music he liked, the Duke was heard to reply: "I really like Coldplay, Linkin Park."

He turned down an offer by pupils who are part of the school's samba band to play one of the drums, telling them: "I used to play the piano, trumpet and drums when I was your age but I couldn't read music.

"There's only so much you can remember from the top of your head."

Visit ITV News Calendar for more on this story.

William and Harry back in the polo saddle for charity

Prince William and Prince Harry were back at the polo pitch today, playing a charity match in Coworth Park near Ascot in Berkshire.

Prince William and Prince Harry play polo. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

The annual charity event in support of charities including the Royal Marsdencancer hospital, HIV fund Sentebale and youth training charity Skillforce.

Prince William and Prince Harry after the game Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

Prince William becomes president of the Sub-Aqua club

The Duke of Cambridge has followed in the footsteps of his father, the Prince of Wales, and grandfather, the Duke of Edinburgh, by taking on the role of president of the British Sub-Aqua Club (Bsac).

Speaking exclusively to Scuba magazine he said:

Scuba diving really has opened my eyes not only to many extraordinary sights, but also to the responsibilities that we have as guardians of the underwater world.

I look forward to working with Bsac to encourage even more young people into the sport, for they are the next generation of underwater explorers, pioneers and protectors.

The skills and experiences gained through snorkelling and scuba diving can have a positive and lasting impact on their lives, giving them confidence and building their aspirations.

– Prince William

Bsac chairman Clare Peddie spoke of the Duke of Cambridge appointment saying:

This is a very proud moment in Bsac's history to welcome the Duke of Cambridge after his father and grandfather before him.

It comes just after Bsac's diamond jubilee and having the Duke at the helm of our organisation as we move into a new era is a huge and special privilege.

It is also a chance for us to say thank you to his father, the Prince of Wales, for the four decades of committed service he has given to Bsac.

– Bsac chairman Clare Peddie

Duke hopes George experiences 'wonders' of snorkeling

Prince George may only be nine months old but his proud father, The Duke of Cambridge, would like to see him in the future experience the "wonders" of snorkelling and scuba diving.

The comments come as Prince William became president of the British Sub-Aqua Club (Bsac) governing body, the third generation of the monarchy to take the helm of president.

Prince George Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA

In a foreword for the magazine 'Scuba,' the Duke of Cambridge said he hopes his son Prince George will take up scuba diving,

Prince William said: "Just like my grandfather and my father, I am proud to say that I learnt to dive with Bsac, and share your passion for the sport and the underwater world.

"I hope that one day my son, George, will also experience the wonders that snorkelling and scuba diving have to offer."

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