1. ITV Report

Kate Middleton ‘excited’ about project encouraging public to reconnect with nature

Kate Middleton is to encourage the public to get back in touch with nature as she helps create a series of prestigious gardens at the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) events this year.

The Duchess of Cambridge is following in the footsteps of her father-in-law the Prince of Wales, whose passion for horticulture is well-known, to co-design a garden for the Chelsea Flower Show with two award winning landscape architects.

The Duchess of Cambridge during a visit to the King Henry’s Walk Garden in Islington to learn about a horticultural project that aims to bring people together Credit: Tolga Akmen/PA

The duchess described the Chelsea project as “very exciting” during a visit to a community garden in Islington, north London to mark the announcement of her collaboration with Andree Davies and Adam White.

The trio will create gardens for the RHS’ flower shows at Hampton Court Palace and Wisley and re-use their Chelsea garden plants to create a green space for an NHS Trust.

Ms Davies said the Chelsea garden had been inspired by childhood memories and they wanted to encourage all members of a family to connect in the green space.

The Duchess of Cambridge speaks with children at King Henry’s Walk Garden  Credit: Tolga Akmen/PA

She said: “It’s a lot to do with memories – her memories, her family’s memories – and trying to get generations to come together.

“Outdoor spaces are such a good place for all generations to come together because there are lots of things to do, and the garden will have activities so an adult and a child can play together.”

Mr White said their Chelsea project will be feature on the shows main avenue, and added: “The challenge we’ve got, the three of us, is to create a space that you feel like you’re in the middle of a woodland, to feel like you’re in a canopy, so you’ve got to create that out of nothing.”

The Duchess of Cambridge helps make winter bird feed with children Credit: Tolga Akmen/PA

Kate had brought up this concept known as “forest bathing”, Mr White added, where city workers can immerse themselves in a green space to combat the stress of work.

He said that during the past three months they had been working together the duchess had been a very “hands on” collaborator, who had brought cuttings and pictures to illustrate her ideas, joined in with creating models and was in regular contact with landscape architects.