After the State Opening of Parliament on Tuesday, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge traveled to Manchester to take part in a very important memorial dedication.
William and Kate were on hand for the official opening of the Glade of Light Memorial near Manchester Cathedral. The garden memorial, which opened to the public in January, is dedicated to the victims of the horrifying terrorist attack at Manchester Arena in May 2017.
Prince William delivered remarks during the official opening. The speech was particularly well done, I thought, drawing on his own experience of grief to connect with the families and friends of those killed in the attack. “There is comfort in remembering,” he said. “In acknowledging that, while taken horribly soon, they lived. They changed our lives. They were loved, and they are loved. It is why memorials such as the Glade of Light are so important. Why Catherine and I so wanted to be here today.” He also paid tribute to the many others affected by the attacks, from first responders and NHS staff to those who suffered from physical and mental injuries. You can read the entire speech here.
The Cambridges also joined Manchester City councillor Bev Craig in laying flowers at the memorial during the ceremony.
I love when little jewelry touches add an extra dimension to a moment, and Kate accessorized her Michael Kors dress with some really lovely tribute jewels.
She wore a pair of gold earrings with bee and honeycomb charms. The choice was a gesture to the importance of the bee symbol for the city of Manchester. The earrings are a custom pair, made by Vania Dörffer of VANLELES Diamonds. Her pieces are handmade in Italy and set with gems ethically sourced from Africa. The designer posted on Instagram earlier today, sharing that the earrings are made of gold, diamonds, blue sapphires, and enamel.
She wrote, “I am so incredibly honoured to have designed and created this special pair of earrings for the Duchess of Cambridge.” Hours later, though, the Instagram post was removed, and the designer posted an Instagram story stating, “Due to protocol we had to remove our previous post.”
Kate paired the earrings with a necklace we’ve seen previously: a yellow gold and lapis lazuli pendant necklace from Astley Clarke. She’s had the necklace in her collection for a little over a year.
With her usual trio of rings, Kate also wore another accessory connected to the memorial: a pink plastic bracelet emblazoned with the words “We Choose Love.” The bracelet comes from Liv’s Trust CIO, a trust established in memory of one of the attack victims, Olivia Campbell-Hardy. They’re honoring her legacy by working to provide music and dance education for young people in Manchester.