Duchess of Cambridge meets pupils during Docklands Sailing and Watersports Centre visit
PUBLISHED: 15:02 16 June 2017 | UPDATED: 15:02 16 June 2017
The Duchess of Cambridge met young sailors and kayakers during a visit to the Docklands Sailing and Watersports Centre.
She met members of sailing charity the 1851 Trust and children from four east London schools, and took part in a variety of activities organised as part of the Land Rover BAR roadshow.
The Duchess was visiting in her role as the patron of the 1851 Trust, the official charity of Britain’s Americas Cup team Land Rover BAR.
It aims to use the Americas Cup – which began in 1851 – to inspire young people into taking up science, technology, engineering and maths subjects and pursuing a career in the sport.
Eleven-year-old Samiyah Khanom was selected to present a posy to the Duchess on her arrival at the Isle of Dogs centre.
“It was nerve-wracking but it was fine,” the Canon Barnett Primary School pupil said afterwards.
“I felt like I had to get it right. I knew it was the opportunity of a lifetime.”
The Year Six pupil added that she only found out about her special role that morning and that her friends “had their fingers crossed” for her.
Teacher Helen Morris said that her own personal interest in sailing led to her bringing pupils from the Gunthorpe Street, Whitechapel school to the sailing centre, and that Samiyah was among a group to have achieved their Royal Yachting Association Level 1 award.
The Duchess took part in a treasure hunt using QR codes with pupils from East London Science School before joining youngsters from Cubitt Town Junior School in the classroom to learn about environmentalism.
She spoke to pupils including 10-year-old Rafi Ahmed, who asked Kate how many cars she had.
“She said she had a Land Rover,” the Year Five pupil explained afterwards. “She asked me, ‘what’s your favourite car?’ I said a Lamborghini.”
The youngster added: “I felt like I was going to be famous.”
During a video chat with Sir Ben Ainslie, who was in Bermuda, she said that she and husband William had been “glued” to the television while watching the Americas Cup, and talked about the challenges his team, which lost in the semi-final, faced on the water.