Fan ‘gobsmacked’ to come within feet of Kate Middleton in Newington Green

The Duchess of Cambridge speaks with children during a visit to the King Henry's Walk Garden in Isli

The Duchess of Cambridge speaks with children during a visit to the King Henry's Walk Garden in Islington, London to learn about a project bringing people together through a shared love of horticulture. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday January 15, 2019. See PA story ROYAL Cambridge. Photo credit should read: Tolga Akmen/PA Wire - Credit: PA

A fan was “gobsmacked” to come within feet of the Duchess of Cambridge when the royal convoy pulled up for Kate Middleton’s trip to Newington Green this morning.

The Duchess of Cambridge helps make pizza during a visit to the King Henry's Walk Garden in Islingt

The Duchess of Cambridge helps make pizza during a visit to the King Henry's Walk Garden in Islington, London to learn about a project bringing people together through a shared love of horticulture. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday January 15, 2019. See PA story ROYAL Cambridge. Photo credit should read: Tolga Akmen/PA Wire - Credit: PA

Tina Dixan, 37, of Holly Street, woke up early and hurried to King Henry’s Walk Community Garden, a volunteer-led gardening initiative, to catch the Duchess’ visit.

Ms Middleton descended on the award-winning garden, where she joined kids from St Jude’s and St Paul’s Primary School to make pizzas topped with herbs grown on site. It was her first royal outing of 2019.

Tina, a full-time carer for her partner, wasn’t able to get into the garden but said the experience was “fantastic”.

“Her car pulled up right in front of me,” she told the Gazette. “I was gobsmacked to think she was literally two steps away from me.

The Duchess of Cambridge speaks with children during a visit to the King Henry's Walk Garden in Isli

The Duchess of Cambridge speaks with children during a visit to the King Henry's Walk Garden in Islington, London to learn about a project bringing people together through a shared love of horticulture. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday January 15, 2019. See PA story ROYAL Cambridge. Photo credit should read: Tolga Akmen/PA Wire - Credit: PA


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“I couldn’t believe it. She was really relaxed. She waved as she arrived and left, which was nice.

“But the only thing that was really gutting was she didn’t walk up and take the flowers – there were only two of us who brought them and I got her tulips.

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“But I think she found all the photographers intimidating.”

Tina admitted that she isn’t a royalist.

She added: “I’m just interested in Kate because she’s down-to-earth and goes out of her way to meet ordinary people.

“I heard about her coming in the Gazette and just thought I’d go down there and chance it.”

The garden was created in 2017 so neighbours could cultivate their own organic plots.

Cllr Jenny Kay (Lab, Mildmay) said: “I was really pleased to be part of the group of local people to welcome the Duchess and the RHS [Royal Horticultural Society] to Mildmay.

“She was able to see two fantastic Mildmay charities at work- King Henry’s Walk Garden which, as well as being a beautiful place, is a model of community-led projects and The Garden Classroom who do amazing work introducing Islington children to nature.

“I’m really proud to work closely with both charities as a ward councillor and to see their approach get the wider recognition it deserves.”

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