Meghan meets cheeky student as she visits London school ahead of International Women's Day

The Duchess of Sussex joined school children, campaigners and teachers as she attended a special assembly ahead of International Women's Day.

Meghan visited Robert Clack Upper School in Dagenham on Friday, one of her final engagements before leaving front line royal life.

Dagenham was where female machinists at the Ford Motor Plant held a strike for equal pay in 1968, leading to the Equal Pay Act two years later.

The movement was later translated to film in the 2010 release Made in Dagenham.

During the assembly, the school remembered the campaigns led by the women which paved the way for future generations.

Those who played key roles in the strike were also present at the presentation, as Meghan spoke about the importance of fighting for equality for all.

During her speech, she asked: "If there is one brave man in this room who wants to come and say what he thinks the important of International Women's Day is..."

One student, 16-year-old Aker Okoye, was then invited to join the duchess.

He joked: "She really is beautiful, innit," prompting laughter from both his classmates and the former Suits actor and model.

The student later said: "It was immense, it was different. I've never been in such a space where I am with people that have been on TV before, still is surreal.

"But I really am inspired that the Duchess of Sussex could even come down today and be with us - and talk about how much the day of International Women's Day means to us and how much it means to her."

The duchess spoke to students about studying influential female writers. Credit: Royal Rota

During her visit, Meghan met with students in the school's library. Here she was told about how they had been studying influential female writers and poets.

Meghan said: "It's so important to have a role model; often times when it someone who looks like you or comes from where you come from, it's easier to connect and see in a different way."

She then met with the school's debate society, who are preparing for their Model United Nations competition, discussing topics including women’s rights and inequality.

The visit follows Meghan's continued work in support of women’s empowerment, social justice and gender equality issues.

Earlier this year, she visited a Vancouver women's shelter to discuss "issues affecting women in the community".

The visit came after the Queen agreed Harry and Meghan could step back as senior royals and begin a “new life” as an “independent” family.

Ahead of that visit, Buckingham Palace had recently confirmed the Sussexes would begin a “transition period” in which they would split their time between the UK and Canada.