Royal couple in spotlight at first official visit

Thu Feb 24, 2011 1:04pm EST
 
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By Dylan Martinez

TREARDDUR BAY, Wales (Reuters) - Prince William and bride-to-be Kate Middleton performed their first official engagement as a couple on Thursday, giving them an early taste of the life in the spotlight that awaits them.

International media and hundreds of local well-wishers descended on Trearddur Bay, on the Welsh island of Anglesey, to greet the couple as they attended the launch of a new lifeboat.

Middleton, 29, had her hair pulled back in a ponytail on a blustery but sunny afternoon and wore a beige, knee-length coat with dark brown trim, dark scarf, gloves and a feather fascinator.

The couple shook hands with local officials ahead of a service of dedication for the new boat.

Middleton poured champagne over the bow of the "Hereford Endeavour," Trearddur Bay lifeboat station's new inshore lifeboat for the RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution).

They then went on a walkabout, looking relaxed as they greeted well-wishers who turned up to catch a glimpse of the young celebrities, and spoke to members of the lifeboat crew.

Although a relatively minor ceremony, for Middleton it offered a brief glimpse of the kind of official duties she will have to perform first as princess, and eventually as queen.

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<p>Britain's Prince William and his fiancee Kate Middleton smile following a Naming Ceremony and Service of Dedication for the Royal National Lifeboat Instution's (RLNI) new Atlantic 85 Lifeboat, the 'Hereford Endeavour', at Trearddur Bay Lifeboat Station, in Trearddur Bay, Anglesey in north Wales February 24, 2011. REUTERS/Phil Noble</p>