Kate scores patronage of Wimbledon as the Queen hands over her duties

Chloe Best

The Queen has reportedly served the Duchess of Cambridge with a prestigious patronage as she prepares to reduce her workload ahead of her 90th birthday. According to the Sunday Times, Kate is set to become patron of the All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club – best known as the venue for Wimbledon.

The Duchess' new role is expected to be officially announced during the tennis tournament this summer, after Her Majesty steps down following 64 years as patron.

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Kate will reportedly become patron of the All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club

It is an honour likely to leave Kate thrilled; as a lifelong tennis fan, she is a regular fixture in the royal box throughout Wimbledon. The Duchess is also a keen tennis player and has been granted planning permission to build a tennis court in the grounds of Anmer Hall, the home she shares with Prince William and their two children Prince George and Princess Charlotte.

It is the second patronage Kate has received in recent months. The Duchess was recently handed Prince Philip's patronage of the RAF Air Cadets, and has now become Honorary Air Commandment of the Air Cadet Organisation – a group of 42,000 air cadets and 15,000 adult volunteers at more than 1,200 units across the UK and abroad.

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William and Kate regularly attend Wimbledon matches together

Meanwhile it has also been suggested that Prince Harry will soon take over as patron of the Rugby Football Union (RFU) which governs English Rugby, a role that the Queen has held for 65 years. The 31-year-old is well suited for the role, having recently served as the honorary president of England Rugby 2015.

A source told the Sunday Times of the changes: "The Queen is mindful that she does not want organisations with which she is associated to think that when she turns 90, that's it – it's goodbye. That will not be the case at all."

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