Royal couple tied the knot with Norfolk when they wed
- Credit: PA
Prince William and Kate Middleton tied the knot with Norfolk when they married.
For the Royal couple, who celebrate their 10th anniversary on Thursday April 29, fell in love with the county where they would share so many happy times.
Norfolk was the first place William and his bride-to-be were seen in public after announcing their engagement.
The couple attended a gala evening in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust at the Thursford Christmas Spectacular, in December 2010. A month earlier William and Kate, who had met at St Andrew's University, announced they were to wed.
A million people lined the streets of London hoping for a glimpse of the couple on their way to Westminster Abbey on April 29 the following year. An estimated 100m more watched around the globe as they exchanged vows.
You may also want to watch:
The best wedding present of all
Of all their wedding presents, perhaps the most treasured of all was their own corner of Norfolk to call home.
- 1 Tax inspectors probe 240 furlough fraud cases in Norfolk and Suffolk
- 2 Norfolk campsite voted third best in UK
- 3 'Very small' number of Indian Covid variant cases in Norfolk
- 4 Driver in hospital after BMW car ends up in ditch
- 5 Lorry driver admits causing deaths of two people in A47 crash
- 6 Social distancing stops fish and chip shop's restaurant opening on May 17
- 7 Norfolk lorry drivers clocked for nearly 200 traffic offences in three days
- 8 Six North Norfolk beaches awarded blue flag status for summer 2021
- 9 Indian variant could hamper roadmap, Norfolk health expert says
- 10 9 pubs and restaurants which have had lockdown makeovers
For as well as the titles of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, it emerged the Queen had given William and Kate Anmer Hall - a 12-bed Georgian mansion on a secluded corner of her 20,000-acre Sandringham Estate, near King's Lynn.
Prince William left his role as an RAF search and rescue helicopter pilot based at Anglesey, in North Wales, in September 2013.
In August 2014, it was announced he would be joining the East Anglian Air Ambulance as a pilot, flying from its base in Cambridge. The career move was accompanied by a house move, as the Cambridges made Anmer Hall their main home with their son Prince George, who had been born on July 22, 2013.
Enjoying the Norfolk life as hall becomes home
The family soon immersed themselves in the Norfolk life. The couple were often seen enjoying meals at a clutch of country pubs around the hall including the Dabbling Duck at Great Massingham, the Crown at East Rudham and King's Head at Great Bircham.
The Duchess shopped local, at everywhere from Waitrose in Swaffham to Gurney's the fishmongers, at Burnham Market, where she is said to have picked up fishcakes when entertaining. She has also shopped at The Range in King's Lynn.
In June 2016, the Cambridges were guests at Taste of Norfolk, a gala evening in aid of the East Anglian Children's Hospice. The event raised £400,000 for the charity, which Kate had become patron of.
Dishes were cooked by Michelin-starred chefs Galton Blackiston, Sat Bains, Claude Bosi, Tom Kerridge and Mark Edwards. The Duchess told them: "William has to put up with my cooking most of the time." The Prince responded: "It's the reason I'm so skinny."
Kate also discovered a love of gardening after moving to the hall, where a conservatory was installed as part of a number of alterations. She was seen in local garden centres, including one where staff serving her as she bought a hosepipe did not recognise her, with one observing instead; "You won't be needing that for a while - they reckon it's going to rain."
The Duchess was also a regular at the horse trials at Houghton Hall and Burnham Market, whilst people living in a nearby village would sometimes see her taking her children to its playground.
While the Cambridges kept a low profile for much of the time, they walked through crowds of well-wishers pushing their newest arrival in an antique pram when Princess Charlotte was christened at Sandringham Church in July, 2015.
In another Norfolk first, the occasion was the first time the Cambridges were seen in public as a family of four when they chose to have Charlotte baptised at the same tiny church where her late grandmother Diana, Princess of Wales, was christened.
In July 2017, Prince William flew the air ambulance for the last time, after it was announced that he would be leaving to concentrate on Royal duties.
He said: "It has been a huge privilege to fly with the East Anglian Air Ambulance. Following on from my time in the military, I have had experiences in this job I will carry with me for the rest of my life, and that will add a valuable perspective to my royal work for decades to come."
Special connections to Norfolk
The Cambridges returned to live at Kensington Palace in London. The following year William spoke of his close bond with Norfolk, in a letter support the first Norfolk Day planned for July 27.
"My family's connections with the county of Norfolk go back more than 150 years when Queen Victoria bought Sandringham House," he wrote. "'My mother was born at Park House in the grounds of Sandringham, and many other family moments have taken place here.
"So it already felt like home when Catherine and I lived there for the first years of George and Charlotte's lives whilst I had a job as a pilot for East Anglian Air Ambulance up the road in Cambridge."
The Prince said Norfolk had 'much' going for it including a beautiful coastline and countryside, historic cities and churches, an ancient culture and rich tradition of local food and drink and 'not to mention global, national and local businesses, contributing to thriving commerce'.
Prince Louis was born in May 2018. The now five strong family continued to enjoy stays at Anmer Hall. In 2019, they chose a picture taken in Norfolk for their Christmas card.
As they joined the Queen and members of the Royal Family for their traditional Christmas gathering at Sandringham, who could have guessed what lay around the corner.
In July, he couple also visited the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King;s Lynn, where they met front line NHS staff.
In May the couple and their children helped load food supplies for the vulnerable, while Prince William also paid visits to the Rose and Crown pub at Snettisham and Smiths Bakers in King's Lynn, while his wife dropped into Fakenham Garden Centre, where she sometimes shops.
In November, it emerged Prince William had had to self-isolate at Anmer after testing positive for coronavirus in April.
Last month, it emerged the Cambridges had returned to live at Kensington Palace in London. But they were back in Norfolk as recently as last weekend, when they enjoyed a short break away from the capital.