The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are pulling double duty next week with RAF engagements planned in both England and Cyprus ahead of the holiday season.
On Tuesday, 4 December, William and Kate will host a Christmas Party in London for service members—along with their families—at RAF Coningsby and RAF Marham who are currently serving in Cyprus. The party will be supported by The Royal British Legion. William is the Honorary Air Commandant of RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire
Per Kensington Palace, the party will be held “in recognition of the unique contribution and sacrifices serving personnel and their families make year-round, and especially when they are separated during the festive period.”
“The support of their families and loved ones is vital not only when personnel are serving, but through transition, recovery and civilian life after service, and The Royal British Legion ensures that those family members are supported in return.”
William and Kate’s Christmas Party will feature stalls for children to decorate stockings, make Christmas crackers, snow globes, and party kits. Entertainment will be provided by Sharky and George. There will also be a photo booth and post box for guests to send pictures and messages to loved ones in Cyprus.
On Wednesday, 5 December, William and Kate will fly to RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus, the home of the Cyprus Operations Support Unit which “provides support to British Forces Cyprus and operations in the region to protect the UK’s strategic interests.”
It will be a busy day in Cyprus for the couple as they will meet deployed personnel from 11 and 31 Squadrons who have been deployed on operations for Op SHADER, the campaign against Daesh; as well as personnel from 2 Mercians, the lead infantry company, who have recently been in Afghanistan.
Following this, William and Kate will open the Oasis Centre, a recreation area on the base for service members who are not on shift. They will visit various rooms within the centre before unveiling a plaque to mark the official opening.
They will meet station personnel, families and British Forces representatives at the Sergeant’s Mess, and will do a walkabout to meet people before attending a Christmas Reception. William and Kate will hand out presents to members of the 11 Squadron which will be given to them at the Christmas Party the previous day in London.