EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: The Duchess of Kent seeks music stars as she celebrates her ... trends now

EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: The Duchess of Kent seeks music stars as she celebrates her ... trends now
EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: The Duchess of Kent seeks music stars as she celebrates her ... trends now

EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: The Duchess of Kent seeks music stars as she celebrates her ... trends now

Although increasingly frail, the Duchess of Kent is determined to leave a lasting legacy.

And, I can reveal, that she is celebrating her 91st birthday on Thursday by launching a 'ground-breaking' partnership between two of her charities to nurture the musical talents of gifted young singers from low-income backgrounds across the country.

Katharine, who is married to Queen Elizabeth's first cousin the Duke of Kent, founded the charity Future Talent, and it is linking up with the National Children's Choir of Great Britain, of which she is Patron. 

The scheme aims to foster the next generation of singers, who will be offered full bursaries to participate in the choir's week-long residential courses during the school holidays each year. 

The children will be given opportunities to take part in performances, workshops, masterclasses, and recordings.

Although increasingly frail, the Duchess of Kent is determined to leave a lasting legacy. Pictured in 2012

Although increasingly frail, the Duchess of Kent is determined to leave a lasting legacy. Pictured in 2012

The Duchess of Kent with her daughter Lady Helen Taylor at a Future Talent Gala Fundraising Evening at Ronnie Scott's Club in 2008

The Duchess of Kent with her daughter Lady Helen Taylor at a Future Talent Gala Fundraising Evening at Ronnie Scott's Club in 2008

'I am truly delighted to witness the union of Future Talent and the National Children's Choir of Great Britain in this important endeavour,' the Duchess says. 

'This partnership embodies the spirit of inclusivity and accessibility, with a shared commitment to nurturing the musical talents of the future.'

Nick Robinson, the chairman and co-founder of Future Talent, tells me: 'It gives me great pleasure to wish Katharine a very happy birthday. 

'She is in good spirits and loves to hear news of Future Talent and our young musicians. 

'She is fully supportive of our new initiative with the National Children's Choir of Great Britain. Katharine is very grateful for all the kind messages on her birthday.'

Born Katharine Worsley, the Duchess has long championed the cause of providing access to musical education for young talents across Britain. 

She taught music at a primary school in East Hull, where she was referred to as 'Mrs Kent' and would travel by train from her home at Kensington Palace, London.

She even revealed in a newspaper interview that she had a fondness for rap music, in particular for the American stars Eminem and Ice Cube.

Katharine married the Duke, Prince Edward, a grandson of George V, at York Minster in 1961 and the couple have three children, George Windsor, Earl of St Andrews, Lady Helen Taylor and Lord Nicholas Windsor.

The Duchess has long championed the cause of providing access to musical education for young talents across Britain. She is pictured visiting the Helen House Hospice in 1985

The Duchess has long championed the cause of providing access to musical education for young talents across Britain. She is pictured visiting the Helen House Hospice in 1985

The Duchess has kept a low-profile since stepping back from royal duties in 1996. In 2002, she decided not to use the style 'Her Royal Highness', memorably telling the BBC, 'Call me Katharine'.

She has, however, joined her husband at formal family events such as Trooping the Colour and royal weddings including those of Prince William and Kate Middleton in 2011, and Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in 2018.

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