Kate offers nature-loving children chance to design sculpture for royal garden

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Kate is teaming up with Blue Peter to host a contest for children to design a sculpture for her Back to Nature garden, which is part of her mission to encourage families to understand the positive impacts of nature. The Royal Garden competition will see one winning participant’s sculpture built and installed in the Duchess’ garden when it is relocated to RHS Wisley in Surrey in September. The Duchess was in her element as she joined Blue Peter presenter Lindsey Russell and a group of children in team den building, pond dipping and planting  at Westminster City Council’s Paddington Recreation Ground. Kate dressed casually in a Troy Tracker jacket, black skinny trousers and sage-coloured pumps as she put her hands to work.

With her sleeves rolled up, the Duchess planted flowers in a metal watering can while the children used old wellies as pots for their plants.

Kate, who is already a gold Blue Peter Badge holder, is set to appear on the BBC programme’s Thursday show – where she is awarded with a green Blue Peter Badge for her efforts.

In the exciting programme, Kate will speak about her love for the outdoors and nature – and how it has rubbed off on her three children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis.

She will explain how much she enjoys spending time with her family outdoors, and that her children are “dragged outside”, whether rain or shine.

Speaking to Ms Russell, she said: “Rain or shine, they’re dragged outside.

“It’s great. It encourages creativity, confidence and even a short amount of time – 10 or 15 minutes outside – makes a huge difference to both physical well-being but also to our mental well-being.”

With her sleeves rolled up, Kate kneeled beside a pond while fishing for tadpoles and newts, saying how pond dipping is “massively up my street, yes definitely. I love it”.

Chatting to the children, Kate said: “What things have you guys found when you’ve been here? …Do you know what the tadpoles eventually turn into? Have you ever seen any froggies?”

As one girl picks up a newt, Kate said: “Look at you. Well done. That is amazing.”

As the group started searching for logs to build the den, Kate said: “There’s so many cool things in here. I love it, but I am in your hands.”

The Royal Garden competition will run from June 13 to June 25.

The Blue Peter episode featuring the duchess will be shown on Thursday June 13 on CBBC at 5.30pm.

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