After having to cancel her engagement in London last week due to poor weather, The Duchess of Cambridge finally made it to Stockwell Gardens Nursery and Pre-School for the launch of the 5 Big Questions campaign – and dished up breakfast whilst there!
Kate was due to head to the nursery on her mini-tour of the UK, after she visited the Thinktank in Birmingham. The visits were to mark the launch of the 5 Big Questions survey, which seeks to gauge public opinion on early years’ development. The Duchess was supposed to begin her day in London, before heading to Cardiff and then Surrey, the latter visits she made.
Staff as well as parents welcomed the royal visitor, and Catherine got straight into chatting about raising children. She spoke to a father about how men are more engaged with the early stages of their children’s lives and how positive it was.
“I think that’s changed, there’s a lot more engagement from parents in general and particularly fathers who want to be involved in this early stage of development,” she commented.
The early-doors session, provided by the London Early Years Foundation (LEYF) helps youngsters start their day properly, with a nutritious breakfast. The old adage goes that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and studies have shown that eating well first thing helps children in their concentration and in turn, learning.
Catherine heard from staff about the importance of nutritious food in a child’s development and spoke about her landmark early years survey, revealing 100,000 people have signed up in the week since its launch.
In the kitchen, the Duchess spoke to chefs Luke Nelson-Neil and Rouchelle Scott-Ashby. Nelson-Neil joked about beetroot, saying about his fussy diners: “I still can’t get them to eat it.”
The Duchess of Cambridge, whose three children are six, four, and one, said: “Mine absolutely love it – it’s one of those things, until you try it, you don’t know.”
LEYF Early Years Chef Academy offers a specialist qualification for cooks working with – or keen to work with – children up to the age of eight.
We heard from the Royal’s appearance in Mary Berry’s recent documentary that Prince Louis ‘absolutely loves’ the red vegetable.
The LEYF operates 39 nurseries in some of London’s most disadvantaged areas and provides high-quality childcare to more than 4,000 children, employing more than 800 staff locally – along with 60 apprentices – across 11 London boroughs.
The Duchess loaded the trolley, then wheeled it into the eating area. Catherine helped plate up fruit for the children, and even poured cereal into bowls and added the milk. She had clearly practised it many times before at home with her own!
Whilst at the event, the Duchess said: “It’s great to visit places like this where communities come together to support one another.
“Last week I launched a UK wide survey on early childhood because I want to hear society’s views about raising the next generation.
“I’m so happy that over 100,000 people from all across the UK have already completed it, and I can’t wait to see the results.”
Following their meal, the children then hit play time, which included the sandbox and water trough.
The 5 Big Questions survey will run until 21 February 2020 – UK readers can participate here.