Northern Irish garden party for William & Catherine

Northern Irish garden party for William & Catherine

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were in Northern Ireland today, as they attended a garden party at Hillsborough Castle.

The Royal couple joined 2,500 guests at the party, which was hosted by the Secretary of State Theresa Villiers for a cross-section of society from the area, including voluntary and community sectors, local charities and youth organisations.

The local Ulster Orchestra entertained the guests, playing arrangements from local composers such as Howard Ferguson and Hamilton Harty in the castle gardens.

Hillsborough Castle is located in the town of Hillsborough, about 30 minutes from Belfast, and is an 18th century manor house. It once belonged to the Hill family, and became a Royal residence after the government bought the building in 1924, and peace talks between Ireland were settled in 1922.

Hillsborough Castle, the location for today's garden party. (VirtuaaliAnu)

Hillsborough Castle, the location for today’s garden party. (VirtuaaliAnu)

Kate chose to wear a Shamrock brooch given to her as a wedding gift from the Irish Guards in 2011. In fact, William and Kate’s last visit was in 2011 just a few weeks before their wedding.

The Secretary of state has hosted the garden party each year since 1984.

This morning, the Duke and Duchess signed the condolence book at the American Embassy in London, to pay their respects to the 49 who died in the mass shooting in Orlando this weekend.

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