On January 9, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge will be celebrating her milestone 40th birthday. While many mark their birthday with a bang, it has been reported that the Duchess has scaled back plans for a big birthday bash.
Traditionally, on royal birthdays, the palace rings the bells of Westminster Abbey as a unique way to mark the special day.
Sadly the bells of Westminster have not been run for any royal birthday since April 202, due to the need to cut down costs amid the pandemic.
“Due to the financial challenges posted to the Abbey by the COVID-19 pandemic, and in consultation with Buckingham Palace, the bells will now ring only for the birthdays of HM The Queen and HRH The Prince of Wales,” a spokesperson from Westminster Abbey said in a statement to 9Honey.
In recent weeks, the emergence of the Omicron variant and surge in Covid-19 cases has sparked national concern. While further restrictions and social gatherings have been reintroduced in England, the Royal Family has taken several extra precautions to limit the spread of the virus.
A source has also told The Mirror that the mother-of-three will be limiting her guest list to “just family and close friends.” Historically known for not being one for anything too extravagant, the Duchess will likely enjoy her day quietly.
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Speaking to OK!, royal expert Duncan Larcombe says the Kate and Prince Willaims are not ones to celebrate on their own and to leave their kids at home.
“I think the same will apply to Kate’s birthday as it does to Christmas – it will be low key and it will be focused entirely on the family,” he said.
Kate’s last birthday party was spent in lockdown, the celebration was a small family affair with Prince William and their three children.
The Mirror reported that Prince William had hosted a secret tea party for the family on the Sandringham estate.
But as with all royal birthdays, the Duchess’s 40th will be marked by the release of a new birthday portrait by Kensington Palace.