Sophie hosts reception at the palace for the Ice Maiden Antarctic ski team

On Monday, The Countess of Wessex held a reception in honour of the Ice Maiden Antarctic ski team, all of whom are members of the British Army.

The Ice Maiden team skied from coast to coast across Antarctica, and are the first all-female team from the British team to have achieved such a feat. Sophie has long been a supporter of them.

During their challenge, the women covered over 1,700km, facing temperatures of -50 degrees celsius. The Ice Maidens carried out the challenge to raise money for charity. The money which was raised was used to support Breast Cancer Care and the Army Cadet Forces Association.

The Countess was joined at Buckingham Palace by the Ice Maiden team: Captain Zanna Baker, Lance Sergeant Sophie Montagne, Major Natalie Taylor, Major Nics Wetherill, Lieutenant Jenni Stephenson and Major Sandy Hennis. Sophie has met the Ice Maidens before, as she spoke to the women before they began their challenge and also sent them a message of congratulations when they completed the trek back in January.

Monday was a busy day for The Countess of Wessex, as she was also in attendance at the Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey, where she was joined by most other senior members of the Royal Family, as well as Meghan Markle. Her husband, Edward, was not in attendance at the service as he was in Chester to attend the launch of the Merseyside and Cheshire Commonwealth Association and The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Exporting Programme at Chester Racecourse.

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