Nervous Kate makes maiden speech

Nervous Kate makes maiden speech

The Duchess of Cambridge speaks at the Treehouse in Ipswich

The Duchess of Cambridge put nerves to one side to give an assured speech at a children's hospice

The Duchess of Cambridge speaks with Bethany Woods as she leaves the Treehouse in Ipswich

First published in National News © by

The Duchess of Cambridge has overcome self-confessed nerves to give her first public speech as she granted the wish of a terminally-ill child's family and posed for a picture.

Kate described the experience as "nerve wracking" minutes after she had received a rousing reception for her inaugural address which had praised the work of one of her charities.

In a speech to launch the new Ipswich centre for East Anglia's Children's Hospices (Each) the Duchess had sounded a little apprehensive at times but maintained her confidence and ended as an assured and well rehearsed member of the Royal Family.

The visit had seen the Duchess strengthen her image as a hardworking member of the monarchy who has undertaken four engagements over the past five days.

But her position as a style icon took a dent as it appeared the royal may have been taking fashion tips from her mother Carole when she appeared in an electric blue £139 Reiss 'Trina' dress - an outfit her parent wore at Ascot in 2010.

Graham Butland, Each's chief executive, described how his royal patron had connected with families and their seriously ill children and had even agreed to pose for a picture with a terminally-ill youngster and his parents at the new Treehouse hospice.

Mr Butland would not name the couple or the illness their three-and-a-half year old son was suffering from but said the actions of the Duchess would mean a lot to them.

He said: "She was absolutely magnificent with the children and families, she seems to have the ability to just drop into a group of people and immediately be able to establish a rapport.

"She spent 10 minutes with a family where the child was very, very ill."

He added: "We left it up to them whether they wanted to see her, we liaised with the palace and mum said would it be possible to have a photo just for the memories."

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