The Princess of Wales has released a heartfelt letter over her Trooping the Colour absence

The Princess of Wales attends the Easter Mattins Service at Windsor Castle
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Princess of Wales is taking a break from public duties as she undergoes preventative chemotherapy, confirming her cancer diagnosis earlier this year.

Since her unprecedented health announcement in March, Princess Kate has been privately recovering at her Windsor home, with reports that she might not return to royal duties until 2025.

After months out of the public eye, there was speculation that Kate, who is Colonel of the Irish Guards, could make a surprise appearance at next week's annual Trooping the Colour ceremony. However, the Princess of Wales put an end to the rumours herself, sending a heartfelt letter to the Irish Guards to apologise in advance for her absence.

The moving letter was released by the Irish Guards, who posted a video to social media of it being read out to them this week, and unsurprisingly it has since gone viral.

"I wanted to write to you to let you know how proud I am of the entire regiment ahead of the Colonel's Review and Trooping the Colour," read the letter penned by the Princess of Wales. "I appreciate everyone Trooping the Colour this year has been practicing for months and dedicating many hours to ensure their uniforms and drill are immaculate.

She continued: "Being your Colonel remains an honour and I'm very sorry that I'm unable to make the salute at this year's Colonel's Review.

"Please pass on my apologies to the whole regiment. I do hope that I'm able to represent you all once again very soon. Please send my very best wishes and good luck to all involved."

The letter, which the Princess of Wales signed as "Colonel" was met by applause from the Irish Guards, who explained in the caption that they were "deeply touched to receive a letter from [their] Colonel."

"We continue to wish Her Royal Highness well in her recovery and send Her our very best wishes," their message continued.

We will continue to update this story.

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.