KATE, the Duchess of Cambridge, will have recently celebrated the arrival of a new baby as it was revealed on the eve of Valentine’s Day her former private secretary and close confidante has welcomed a son. Kate’s former aide Rebecca Priestley and her husband Adam Alexander Priestley welcomed their second son on January 27. But news of the baby’s birth was shared on Sunday, surely delighting the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Mrs Priestley’s former colleagues at the Royal Household.
Mrs Priestley tied the knot in 2017, two years before she gave birth to the couple’s firstborn William Michael Alexander, known as Billy.The Priestleys’ newborn was named Patrick Michael Walter but will be known as Paddy. Mrs Priestley worked with Kate between 2011 and 2017, before she quit to start her own private company.
During her time at Kensington Palace, Mrs Priestley was widely considered a vital aide for Kate. Among her duties, there were planning programmes and engagements, ensuring Kate was properly briefed ahead of her meetings and supporting the Duchess during her foreign visits.
Mrs Priestley joined the Cambridges as part of their entourage for their tours of Australia, New Zealand and Canada. Prior to working for Kate, Mrs Priestley was part of the team of Prince Harry’s beloved charity Sentebale. The appreciation for Mrs Priestley’s vital work within the Royal Household was publicly acknowledged in October 2017, a few months after she had quit, when Prince William awarded her the Royal Victorian Order during an investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace.
Established in 1896, the RVO is given only to people who distinguished themselves for their service to the monarch, the Royal Family, the Commonwealth or any representative of the sovereign. The former aide was also given another honour on that same year, as she was allowed to get married in the Chapel Royal at St James’s Palace – a venue normally opened only to those with a direct link to the Firm. Mrs Priestley recently provided an insight into the Duchess of Cambridge’s approach to work.
Speaking to The Sunday Times magazine prior to Kate’s 40th birthday in early January, the ex-aide said: “She has a great sense of humour. “On a trip back from an engagement, she will giggle if something went wrong and sees the funny side of things and will often take the mick out of herself and William.
“People mainly see her professional side, but it doesn’t mean the fun’s not there.” Mrs Priestley’s baby was born just weeks after Kate surely rejoiced for the birth of the second child of Natasha Archer, her stylist and personal assistant. Ms Archer is the wife of royal photographer Chris Jackson, who announced the birth of their new baby in December via Instagram.
Like Mrs Priestley, Ms Archer was awarded an RVO in 2019 by Prince William. The stylist was initially hired as Kate’s personal assistant in 2007, but she increased her workload over the years. Speaking about their relationship, a royal source told Grazia in 2020: “Natasha and Kate get on very well. “She has always supported and advised Kate – and the duchess loves Natasha’s style. “It seemed like an obvious appointment.”