Breaking into the holidays! Members of the royal family gathered for the annual Easter service without their matriarch, Queen Elizabeth II, on Sunday, April 17.
Prince William and Duchess Kate celebrated with their eldest children: Prince George, 8, and Princess Charlotte, 6. (The couple also shares Prince Louis, 3 years old). when they were spotted at mass at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle. During the first official Easter performance of the first graders, they also had the opportunity to meet with one of the clergy of the chapel.
The 39-year-old Duke of Cambridge and the 40-year-old Duchess of Cambridge also wished their Instagram followers a joyful holiday. The couple, who got married in April 2011, shared a “Happy Easter” card in their story.
Last year, unable to participate in their usual Easter practice with the Queen amid the coronavirus pandemic, William and Kate decided to spend the 2021 holiday hunting Easter eggs for their little ones at their country house in Norfolk, England.
According to Buckingham Palace, the 95-year-old Queen’s Easter weekend is usually “spent with her family.” However, the COVID-19 pandemic has not allowed members of the royal family to fully assemble since 2019.
A few days before the family’s Easter gathering — with the exception of the Queen — Elizabeth spent time with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, who visited her residence at Windsor Castle on their way to the Invictus Games in the Netherlands. The reunion marked the first time Harry, 37, and the 40-year-old Force Majeure graduate have returned to the UK as a couple since 2020, when they gave up their royal duties.
While Her Majesty was spending time with Harry and Meghan in the days leading up to the holiday, she skipped her Maundy Thursday tradition. Before the pandemic, the Queen traditionally spent the Thursday before Easter traveling to various cathedrals across the UK to hand out coins in recognition of contributions to society and the church.
However, this year the monarch did not participate in the tradition. Her place was taken by her eldest son Prince Charles and his wife Duchess Camilla. It was only the fifth time the queen had missed a service in her 70-plus years on the throne.
While Harry and Meghan’s pre-Easter visit to the Queen was the first time for the author of the “Bench” after moving to California, Harry has repeatedly visited his native country, including the funeral of Elizabeth’s husband, Prince Philip, in April 2021. However, BetterUp’s CIO did not attend the late Duke of Edinburgh’s family memorial last month.
Ahead of the service, the Duke of Sussex sought a judicial review of the Home Office’s decision, arguing that he could not personally fund the police protection of his family while traveling abroad. The Sussex couple have a son, Archie, 2, and a daughter, Lilibet, 10 months.
“Security cannot replicate the necessary police protection required in the UK,” Harry’s team said in a January statement. “In the absence of such protection, Prince Harry and his family cannot return home.”
Scroll below to see more photos from the royals’ Easter walk:
A family of four
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge held George and Charlotte’s hands as they entered the chapel before the service.
Pretty woman in blue
Both Kate and Charlotte chose pastel blue dresses.
Glad to be here
Kate attended the annual family Easter celebrations on Sunday, April 17.
All in the family
Princess Eugenie, who welcomed son August with husband Jack Brooksbank in February 2021, attended the services with her cousin Peter Phillips. Phillips, the son of Princess Anne, brought his daughters Isla and Savannah.
The more the better
Prince Edward and Countess Sophie entered the church on Sunday with their daughter Lady Louise and son James, Viscount Severn.