William & Kate try cider and reveal they didn’t know what job they wanted to do in Cornwall

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge began their two-day ‘mini-tour’ of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly this morning. During the course of the visit, William and Kate are focusing on mental health, a range of local charities, local businesses, and there will be a number of engagements with Duchy of Cornwall projects.


The highly-anticipated trip is William and Kate’s first official visit to the scenic part of South West England since their wedding.

The Cambridges spent today in Cornwall, kicking off their visit in Truro, Cornwall’s only city. The couple visited the Cathedral where they met civic dignitaries and cathedral representatives. The Cathedral of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Truro, took 30 years to build, and was completed in 1910 in a Gothic Revival design by John Loughborough Pearson. It is one of only three cathedrals in the UK with three spires, the other two being Lichfield and St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral in Edinburgh.

The Royal Maundy Service was held in the cathedral in 1994 when the Queen presented 134 Cornish people with traditional Maundy money.


While there the Duke and Duchess also signed roof slates in support of the Truro Cathedral roof appeal. Sign-A-Slate offers those making a donation to the appeal the chance to sign or write a message on the back of one of the 60,000 new slates being used to re-slate the cathedral roof – one that will be in place, complete with those messages, for generations to come.

There are three levels at which you can participate. For a donation of £5 you have the opportunity to sign or write on one-sixth of a shared slate. For a £25 donation an entire slate becomes your canvas, upon which you can write and draw. Lastly, for a £250 donation, you can enjoy an extra special VIP signing experience as you and up to three of your family and friends write on your slate at an invitation-only drinks reception.


The next two engagements of the day were embargoed for security reasons. The first of which saw the Cambridges visit Zebs, a Truro-based youth centre operated by Young People Cornwall, an organisation which works with 11 to 25-year-olds, encouraging them to reach their potential.

Zebs credits its success to “giving young people the freedom to do what they want, when they want to. A safe, encouraging space to hang out with opportunities to explore and discover, young people feel comfortable and confident to grow and develop, ready to seek support and advice when they need it”.

William and Kate discussed taking time to work out the right career path, with both admitting they struggled – despite the Duke being destined from the throne at birth.

The Duchess queried the youngsters about their ambitions. “Do any of you know what you would love to be? Do you have some aspirations?”


Her husband then offered some advice. “It is totally cool not to have that by the way. It took me an awfully long time to work out what I wanted to be.”

Kate agreed: “It’s so difficult because there’s so much out there. It is hard, isn’t it, to pinpoint one thing. William is right. I found it difficult as well.”

From there, William and Kate visited a successful local business – Healeys Cornish Cyder Farm. The Duke and Duchess were there to help mark the company’s 30th anniversary, and did so by pulling a pint or two!

The family business was set up in 1986, and have also turned the fruit from their orchards into other drinks, jams and juices; they also built Cornwall’s first distillery in 300 years and produce England’s oldest whiskey.


William and Kate toured the facility and met staff who work on the site. While they were trying apple juice, William joked: “Where’s the alcoholic stuff?”

Not one to miss a chance to have a bit of fun on this outing, Catherine pulled a pint of strong cider and handed it to William, who said: “I’ll fall over if I drink that.”

Next, William and Kate travelled to Newquay to visit two Duchy of Cornwall projects, the first of which is Nansledan, a 218-hectare site that will provide future business and housing for the local area.


On something of a walkabout to meet locals, Linda Moore, 62, propositioned the Duke for a kiss: “I asked him, ‘Can I have a kiss?’ And he said, ‘You can give me a peck on the cheek’.” And when she asked for a hug too, William responded: “Oh, go on then.”

Mrs Moore revealed she’d met Diana, Princess of Wales, 25 years ago. “I said to him, ‘You look like your mum,’ and he said, ‘I think my mum was better looking’.

“He’s lovely. I’ve just got to meet Harry now. Then I’ve met all of them. I met the Queen in Camborne.”

Finally, the Duke and Duchess were given an introduction to the work of the Wave Project on Newquay’s Towan Beach, an organisation that uses surfing as a tool to reduce anxiety in children and improve their mental well-being.


The Wave Project uses local surfers to help young people reduce anxiety and improve emotional health in young people. Some of the surf mentors even started out as clients themselves.

William and Catherine certainly seemed to enjoy the first day of their two day mini-tour, and spent the night at Restormel Manor, a 500-year-old property owned by Prince Charles’ Duchy. We’ll be back tomorrow with more engagements.

Note: This article was originally published at A Petite Princess, where Patricia Watts is full time editor in chief

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