The Duchess of Cambridge has denied reports she is “furious” and feels “exhausted and trapped” at the increase in her workload as the Royal Family adjusts to the coronavirus pandemic.
Kate and her husband Prince William have been seen on frequent Zoom calls in recent weeks as they speak to staff on the frontline battling the illness.
The mother of three, 38, is working more this year compared with last according to the engagements listed in the Court Circular.
In a recent piece, society magazine Tatler praised her for emerging from what has been a tricky year for the Royal Family “serene and smiling”.
But Tatler also quoted a friend of the duchess as saying: “Kate is furious about the larger workload. Of course she’s smiling and dressing appropriately but she doesn’t want this.
“She feels exhausted and trapped. She’s working as hard as a top CEO, who has to be wheeled out all the time, without the benefits of boundaries and plenty of holidays.”
It’s prompted an unusual denial from Kensington Palace, where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have their offices and their home in London.
A statement from the palace said: “This story contains a swathe of inaccuracies and false misrepresentations which were not put to Kensington Palace prior to publication.”
It’s common for news outlets to seek a right of reply from a story subject before publication.
Since the coronavirus outbreak led to lockdown in the UK, Kate and William have been living in Anmer Hall, their Norfolk home, where they have been homeschooling their children.
They have shifted their usual royal work focus and are concentrating on the response to the pandemic, including the mental health of those frontline and key workers across the UK.
The couple will inevitably have faced a larger workload following the decision by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to step back as senior royals.
The family is also missing a working royal in Prince Andrew, who stepped back indefinitely in November.
Prince Charles and his wife Camilla now carry out many of their engagements online, but are both in the age range considered high risk for COVID-19.
Charles, 71, tested positive for it in March, but only displayed mild symptoms. Camilla, 72, tested negative.
The Queen is in Windsor Castle with her husband Prince Philip. At 94 and 98, extra care has to be taken to ensure their good health.
Kate and William have stepped up to fill those gaps, and in the last few weeks have made calls to charities across the UK, become bingo callers for a care home game, and voiced a mental health minute that was played out on radio stations.
Kate also launched a photography project which she hopes will capture the mood and moment of the nation in the pandemic.