Beaming Kate returns to royal events at Trooping the Colour - her first public appearance since cancer diagnosis

The Princess of Wales joined the Royal Family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace for the Trooping the Colour flypast - after making her first public appearance since the announcement of her cancer diagnosis.

Kate, 42, wearing a pale outfit, was earlier pictured arriving at Buckingham Palace in a car sat alongside her children and her husband the Prince of Wales ahead of the event to celebrate the King's official birthday.

The princess, who has been receiving treatment for an undisclosed form of cancer since late February, and her three children Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis, were cheered by crowds along The Mall as they left the palace in a carriage for the ceremony.

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The future queen looked relaxed as she travelled along one of London's most famous thoroughfares with her family in a carriage.

She could be seen smiling and talking to her children in the carriage before they arrived at Horse Guards Parade in Whitehall.

William rode on horseback for the procession, alongside the Princess Royal, and the Duke of Edinburgh.

The King, who is also undergoing cancer treatment, rode in a carriage with the Queen, a departure from last year because of his illness, and inspected the officers and guardsmen from the coach rather than from a horse.

When the royal carriages finally came to a stop, Louis was the first to leave, followed by his elder brother George, and sister Charlotte.

Finally, Kate stepped down wearing a Jenny Packham dress, hat by Philip Treacy, and the Irish Guards Regimental Brooch, as she is the regiment's colonel.

In another change from last year, Kate did not join senior family members on a dais, but watched the military spectacle - also known as the Birthday Parade - from a balcony in the Duke of Wellington's former office with her children.

Prince Louis, six, at one point seemed to be distracted by a blind cord and was seen yawning while watching the parade before dancing along during the quick march of the Scots Guards to Highland Laddie.

Heavy rain began to fall as the royal procession made its way back to Buckingham Palace but the King and Queen, as well as Kate and her children, were protected from the downpour in their covered carriage.

Princess Charlotte, nine, smiled and waved enthusiastically to the crowds who braved the weather, while her brothers also smiled and waved to the sea of umbrellas along The Mall.

A 41-gun salute was then fired by the King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery in nearby Green Park before Kate and her family joined the King and Queen, as well as other royals, on the Buckingham Palace balcony to watch the RAF flypast.

They smiled and waved to the cheering crowds before standing proudly as the national anthem was played, with the flypast ending with the Red Arrows trailing their trademark red, white and blue colours.

Ahead of the event, Kate said: "I'm looking forward to attending the King's Birthday Parade this weekend with my family and hope to join a few public engagements over the summer, but equally knowing I am not out of the woods yet.

"I am learning how to be patient, especially with uncertainty.

"Taking each day as it comes, listening to my body, and allowing myself to take this much needed time to heal."

Read more:
Princess of Wales's statement in full
Princess of Wales, says she's 'not out of the woods'

Her appearance was in doubt after she missed the final Trooping rehearsal last weekend.

This is Kate's first official outing of 2024 after she missed engagements at the start of the year when she was admitted to hospital for abdominal treatment.

At the time her condition was thought to be non-cancerous, but tests after the successful operation found the disease, and Kate disclosed the diagnosis in March.

A time frame has not yet been set for Kate's return to a full schedule of public engagements.