Prince William made THREE secret visits to a London homeless centre before Christmas where he helped pack food and chatted to residents
- Prince William visited The Passage on three separate occasions in December
- The Duke first visited homeless centre with his mother Princess Diana in 1993
- William worked alongside team of volunteers to prepare hot meals for residents
- The royal also spoke with homeless residents about their recent experiences
The Duke of Cambridge, 38, first visited The Passage in 1993 as a young child with his mother Diana, Princess of Wales and has since visited many times both publicly and privately.
During his December visits the royal worked alongside a team of volunteers to prepare hot meals for those who had been moved off the streets and into emergency accommodation.
The father-of-three, who previously revealed what a ‘deep and lasting impression’ the charity has had on him over the years, also spoke to those affected by homelessness about their experiences.
Prince William volunteered at The Passage homeless charity in a ‘private capacity’ on three separate occasions before Christmas
William visited the charity’s Resource Centre in Westminster, where he prepared and served meals.
He also spent time at two residential projects – Passage House Assessment Centre in Pimlico, and Montfort House in Bethnal Green, which caters to clients with complex needs – where he dished out food and chatted with residents.
The pandemic has been a difficult period for the centre; it managed to serve 70,000 meals during both national lockdowns and hopes William’s visits will act as a much-needed publicity boost.
The Passage Chief Executive Mick Clarke said of the visit: ‘This year, more than ever, our army of volunteers have enabled The Passage to keep our vital services running throughout both lockdowns and the time in-between.
A touching photo from a visit to the centre in 1993 shows a young Prince William and Prince Harry posing with their mother, Princess Diana, and a resident
A second image shared by Kensington Palace shows William’s signature next to Princess Diana’s in the visitor’s book entry from December 1993
‘From our emergency food hub to fundraising, outreach to essential office support, our Home for Good programme to our residential projects, we are extremely fortunate to have such a versatile and committed group of supporters.’
Speaking at The Passage in 2016, the Duke revealed the profound impact the centre has had on him.
‘The visits I made as a child to this place left a deep and lasting impression upon me,’ he said.
‘About how important it is to ensure that everyone in our society, especially the poorest, are treated with respect, dignity and kindness, and are given the opportunities to fulfil their potential in life.’
The Duke of Cambridge in a light-hearted moment at The Passage last year as he prepared carrots in the centre’s London kitchen
One touching photo from 1993 shows a young Prince William and Prince Harry posing with their mother during a visit to the centre.
A second image shared by Kensington Palace shows William’s signature next to Princess Diana’s in the visitor’s book entry from that December.
William has become the figurehead of The Passage, an organisation which has helped more than 130,000 people in crisis over almost 40 years through its resource centre, homelessness prevention projects and innovative accommodation services.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge last made a public visit to the centre in February, where William rolled up his shirt sleeves to help prepare lunch by chopping vegetables.
The Duke and Duchess on a visit to The Passage in December 2018, where they heard from frontline workers about some of the challenges relating to street homelessness, including drug addiction and mental health issues
Cardinal Vincent Nichols, head of the Catholic Church in England and Wales and patron of The Passage, welcomed the announcement ahead of the Duke’s visit .
He said: ‘I know the duke is deeply committed to working with those most in need, such as the thousands of people The Passage has helped off the streets.’
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge also paid a visit to the centre with cookery legend Mary Berry as part of a special BBC Christmas programme in December 2018.