The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are to embark on the next major phase of their life by moving their family to Windsor, with Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis all starting at the same school.
William and Kate will set up home in Adelaide Cottage in Windsor’s Home Park, and the children will join the private Lambrook School near Ascot in Berkshire in September. The duke and duchess are seeking a life away from their official residence at London’s Kensington Palace in a bid to put their children first and give them more freedom.
The royal couple had been known to have their heart set on the school, with its 52 acres of grounds, where fees will cost William and Kate in excess of £50,000 a year. The family will use the 19th century Adelaide Cottage as their base after the Queen gave them permission to lease the four-bedroom cottage, which belongs to the Crown Estate.
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It was built for Queen Adelaide in 1831 and is nestled just a 10-minute walk from Windsor Castle in the private Home Park. Kensington Palace said in a statement: “The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have today announced that Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis will attend Lambrook School in Berkshire from September 2022.
“Their Royal Highnesses are hugely grateful to Thomas’ Battersea where George and Charlotte have had a happy start to their education since 2017 and 2019 respectively and are pleased to have found a school for all three of their children which shares a similar ethos and values to Thomas’.”
Kensington Palace confirmed the family will be moving to Adelaide Cottage in Windsor’s Home Park before the school term begins. A royal source said: “This is very much a decision that two parents have made to give their children the ‘most normal’ start possible.
“[Kensington Palace] can be a little bit of a fishbowl. They wanted to be able to give George, Charlotte and Louis a bit more freedom than they have living in central London.
“It’s very much a decision that’s been led by the kids.”
Lambrook School sits on the outskirts of Bracknell just a 20-minute drive from Adelaide Cottage, and their new home is just a short stroll to see the Queen at Windsor Castle. The source added being able to be close to the 96-year-old monarch was a factor in the move.
William and Kate will retain Kensington Palace’s Apartment 1A, which was refurbished with £4.5 million of taxpayers’ money in 2013, as their official residence and their working base, which will continue to house their office staff. They will also keep their 10-bedroom Norfolk country mansion Anmer Hall, which was a gift from the Queen, has a swimming pool and tennis court and underwent large-scale building work at their own cost.
The downsizing to Adelaide Cottage, which is not considered vast, means William and Kate’s full-time nanny Maria Teresa Turrion Borrallo will live elsewhere for the first time, as will other staff including the housekeeper and the chef. The source said the duke and duchess were very conscious of how their move stands in contrast to the cost-of-living crisis impacting the nation.
Asked whether the couple was mindful of the economic difficulties facing many who would not be able to afford such opportunities, the source said: “They absolutely are. It’s something they have thought long and hard about and this is a decision they have not taken lightly.
“It would have been extremely difficult for them to continue on as senior working royals if they were based in Norfolk. What they have basically done allows them to put the kids first, but also to continue on doing what they do all day, every day.”
William and Kate will pay market value on the property from their own private funds, not from taxpayers’ money via the Sovereign Grant, and will foot their own moving costs. Future king George, nine, and Charlotte, seven have left their current school Thomas’s Battersea in London and four-year-old Louis be starting full-time education. They will enjoy first class facilities at Lambrook including a swimming pool, sports pitches and new £6 million academic and ICT building.
Headmaster Jonathan Perry said he is "delighted" the Cambridge children will be joining the school in September.
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