The Duchess of Cambridge rushed herself from the Royal Box at Wimbledon the moment she learned she had to self-isolate, it emerged today.
Kate is understood to have been alerted personally and was not ‘pinged’ by the NHS Test and Trace app, leaving the All England Club at 5pm on Friday – significantly earlier than she has done in previous years – and missing the match involving her friend Andy Murray.
She was alerted after taking her seat next to the Duke of Kent and in front of Body Coach Joe Wicks, but left ‘immediately’ after being told she had come close to someone who tested positive for coronavirus, according to The Times.
Kate Middleton is perhaps the most famous name to be forced into quarantine because of Boris Johnson’s crippling test and trace rules – despite her having both vaccine doses, four negative Covid tests and no symptoms in the past week.
It came as new Health Secretary Sajid Javid said he would soon change track and trace – hinting the double-jabbed may be exempt.
The royal was spotted looking serious as she was driven out of Wimbledon’s gates heading for Kensington Palace, where she is holed up today and unable to leave – even for food or medicine. She is not permitted to have visitors in her home, including family and friends, and will even have been told to avoid contact with anyone she lives with as much as possible.
Her absurd quarantine prevented the Duchess from attending the NHS’ 73rd birthday celebrations with William at St Paul’s Cathedral and Buckingham Palace yesterday.
Sources stressed that she followed rules laid down at Wimbledon, which require visitors to wear a mask when moving through the grounds at SW19 but not while sitting in the stands.
The duchess is said to have had her second vaccination even though it is only just over five weeks since she released pictures of her getting her first at the Science Museum in London. Until yesterday, the guidelines stipulated an 11 or 12-week gap between jabs for under-40s not classed as vulnerable, although in some cases a shorter wait was allowed.
Her ten-day self-isolation period includes the day on which she was last in contact with the person who tested positive. If it was on Wednesday, she could, in theory, be free to return to official duties by the weekend.
The Duchess of Cambridge was last seen in public being driven home through west London to Kensington Palace on Friday, around the time she may have learned that she needed to self-isolate as Boris Johnson’s farcical rules hit the royal
Kate spent much of the afternoon in the Royal Box on Centre Court, where she was surrounded by other VIPs
The Duchess of Cambridge sat with Tim Henman and Wimbledon chief executive Sally Bolton for Jamie Murray’s match
Kate waved to fans as she arrived at Wimbledon on Friday morning at just after 11am on Friday
A smiling Kate leaves Wembley with the family after England’s big win over Germany
Kate’s only other public engagement was at Wembley where William, Kate and George spoke with David Beckham
Prince William, Duke of Cambridge hosts a NHS Big Tea garden party to commemorate the NHS’ 73rd Birthday at Buckingham Palace – but without his self-isolating wife yesterday
Kate Middleton’s week: Duchess of Cambridge’s only public engagements were at Wembley and Wimbledon
MONDAY No official engagements,
TUESDAY Kate joined her husband Prince William and son Prince George to watch England take on Germany in their Euro 2020 match at Wembley. The couple were seen talking to fellow VIP guests including David Beckham and his son Romeo, 18, and Ed Sheeran and his wife Cherry. Like the other spectators, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge did not wear masks while in the stands.
WEDNESDAY No official engagements.
THURSDAY No official engagements,
FRIDAY Duchess of Cambridge paid a visit to Wimbledon where she took in a match with Tim Henman, helped the executive chef prepare strawberries in the kitchen and visited the on site museum. She also sat in the Royal Box at Centre Court, where she spoke to Body Coach Joe Wicks. In keeping with event guidance, Kate kept her mask on while travelling around the site and while inside the museum and kitchen but removed it when seated. She arrived at around midday and left at 5pm.
SATURDAY No official engagements.
SUNDAY No official engagements.
MailOnline understands she was alerted about the contact with a Covid-infected person on Friday afternoon – after spending most of the day at Wimbledon with VIPs including Tim Henman, who is not self-isolating. It means she must quarantine for ten days even if she tests negative, which she has, up to four times, in the past seven days including before and after her Wembley trip with William and George.
It is not known if the Duchess of Cambridge was alerted after being ‘pinged’ via the NHS app, a phone call from test and trace or if she or her team was contacted personally – but William’s ability to continue his duties yesterday means the covid case is unlikely to be in their inner circle.
Kensington Palace said in a statement: ‘Last week The Duchess of Cambridge came into contact with someone who has subsequently tested positive for Covid-19. Her Royal Highness is not experiencing any symptoms, but is following all relevant government guidelines and is self-isolating at home’.
Kensington Palace has not revealed where or when exactly the contact was only saying it was ‘last week’, when Kate’s only two public engagements were at the All England Club on Friday and with William and George at England’s historic win over Germany on Tuesday night.
Kate has spent time close to a host of VIPs including David Beckham and Ed Sheeran at Wembley and Tim Henman and Joe Wicks at Wimbledon.
But it is not known if any of them tested positive for covid, or whether the contact came via a friend, a member of staff or another parent on the school run last week.
The Duchess arrived at Wimbledon at around 11am and was joined by Wimbledon chief executive Sally Bolton and former British tennis player Tim Henman on an outside court where they watched Andy Murray’s brother Jamie play.
She was also pictured laughing and smiling as she prepped strawberry desserts at the All England Club before heading to the Royal Box where she seen speaking to a beaming Joe Wicks, leaving around 5pm.
Kate’s only other public engagement was on Tuesday when she went to Wembley Stadium with William and George to watch England beat Germany.
A palace source said that the Duchess took lateral flow tests before both engagements and both were negative. In addition to this, the Duchess is tested twice weekly with lateral flow tests as part of the Royal Household testing regime, meaning she had four negative tests in that time.
It means that William is having to lead and celebrate the 73rd anniversary of the NHS yesterday, alone. The couple were due to attend a service of thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral this morning before hosting an afternoon tea at Buckingham Palace. But instead the Duke of Cambridge is now flying solo.
Kate’s last public event was a visit to Wimbledon on Friday when she toured the SW19 sporting venue meeting staff in the museum, Centre Court kitchen and sitting with former tennis star Tim Henman to watch Jamie Murray play in the doubles.
The duchess is patron of the All England Lawn Tennis Club and a keen tennis fan but is now likely to miss the men’s and Women’s final at the weekend.
Her only other public engagement was at Wembley, but it is not known if she attended any other events last week.
The Duchess, who is self-isolating today, was joined by Wimbledon chief executive Sally Bolton and former British tennis player Tim Henman on Friday during a visit that may have forced her to quarantine at home
At one point the Duchess of Cambridge checked a mobile phone. It is not known if she was pinged via the NHS app. Later she prepped some strawberries to be eaten with cream
The Duchess headed to the All England Club’s kitchen where she helped prepare the classic Wimbledon snack of strawberries and cream
The Duchess of Cambridge chats with the beaming Body Coach Joe Wicks in the Royal Box at Centre Court on Friday afternoon
Kate was also sat next to Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, (left) president of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club
William, Kate and George after England beat Germany, pictured in front of Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden with the Beckhams and Ed Sheeran to their right (out of picture)
The Duke of Cambridge arrives for the NHS service of commemoration and thanksgiving to mark the 73rd birthday of the NHS at St Paul’s Cathedral, London, without the Duchess of Cambridge
William enjoys a drink and a chat with NHS staff who have worked through the pandemic
William contracted Covid last spring and was able to carry on with telephone and online engagements while he was treated by royal doctors but was reportedly hit ‘pretty hard’ by the virus and at one stage struggled to breathe.
The Prince of Wales also caught the virus during the same period but had milder symptoms although he did lose his sense of smell and taste for a period.