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The nifty way Kate Middleton beat the chill during nationwide tour

The Duchess of Cambridge recycled one of her best high-street buys

Jenni McKnight

The Duchess of Cambridge found a nifty way to beat the chilly weather during her surprise visits to Northern Ireland and Scotland on Wednesday, in support of her early childhood survey. Kate made sure she was well prepared to visit The Ark Open Farm in Newtownards, Northern Ireland – where she spoke to local parents and grandparents about their experiences of raising young children – by wearing a pair of skinny jeans, a khaki jacket by Troy London and a pair of boots by Penelope Chilvers. But by the time she arrived in Scotland, the Duchess had made a few choice wardrobe changes.

Kate was spotted emerging from her car once she arrived at the Social Bite cafe in Aberdeen in a different coat and a new pair of knee-high boots. The Duchess swapped her chic jacket for a much warmer wool coat, opting to recycle a grey Reiss number that she was first spotted wearing on 6 December 2013 to visit the Shooting Star Children’s Hospice in London. Kate also swapped her farm-friendly Penelope Chilvers boots for a pair of black suede boots.

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Kate Middleton changed into a Reiss coat she first wore in 2013

During her trip to Aberdeen, Kate helped to prepare meals in the kitchen at the café. Social Bite runs social enterprise cafés across Scotland and distributes food and hot drinks to people experiencing homelessness. The organisation also employs staff who have experienced homelessness themselves.

Kate, who is known as the Countess of Strathearn in Scotland, posed for a group photo with staff at the Social Bite cafe. The Duchess said: "Over the last eight years I've had the privilege of meeting people from all walks of life, facing all sorts of challenges. What has struck me most is that so often the challenges people face in later life, whether mental health, homelessness or family breakdown – can so often be traced back to experiences in their earliest years.

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During her stop in Northern Ireland, the Duchess opted for a chic Troy London jacket

"It prompted me to delve deeper into the early years landscape and learn more from the experts, the scientists and the amazing people providing services on the ground. But now is the time to get the views from everyone in society. I wanted to hear directly from people across the UK and it's great to have been able to talk to people in Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and across England about their experiences. I want to thank the 200,000 people who have filled it out because each and every response will help show us what society really thinks about raising the next generation. I am excited to hear from even more people before it closes on 21st February."

Kate's stop in Scotland marked the final day of her nationwide tour, as the number of responses to her survey reached 200,000, making it the biggest ever survey of its kind conducted in the UK. The online survey on early childhood closes on 21 February. Have your say in the 5bigquestions survey. 

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