Royal tour too focused on Kate’s fashion

Following Prince William and Catherine’s tour of India and Bhutan felt like “turning the pages of a picture book”, a royal expert says.


Ingrid Seward, the editor of Majesty magazine, said she felt the visit had lacked substance but understood why it had to be so tightly controlled.

The royal couple have spent the last seven days taking in the sights as they travelled around India and Bhutan, including the Taj Mahal and Kaziranga National Park.

“It was the ‘what Kate wore tour’, and I think that’s unavoidable really because she gives such a wonderful display,” she said.

“I know it used to really frustrate Diana, when everything people used to concentrate on was her dresses and what she wore.

“I think it is illustrative of the difficulties of these old-fashioned royal tours in this modern era. They have to be so regimented and there is this massive worry about security so that stops anything spontaneous happening.

“It was terrific, but I felt as if we were turning the pages of a picture book.”

There has been a high level of interest in the Kate’s fashion choices for the trip, during which she has stepped out in outfits including a pink embroidered smock dress from Topshop and a floaty print dress by the Indian designer Anita Dongre.

The royal biographer said Kate’s outfits were “spot on”, praising her alternation between high street and designer clothes, but added: “I just think she produced rather too many.”

Ms Seward said: “The tours so far have been very much William and Kate together doing things like firing bows and arrows. It is just too much archery and not enough substance.”

Looking back 24 years she said: “When Diana was there it was a very different royal tour – she saw the nuns in Calcutta and met the Untouchables – it was much more of Diana being saint-like and this is much more sort of glamour.

“It is bad luck to have the comparisons but they are going to be there.”