Imagine sitting in KFC, tucking into your Bargain Bucket, and looking up to see the future king staring at you through the window.
Well, that’s exactly what happened to a group of diners at the Waterloo branch of the fast-food chain.
Prince William joined the Duchess of Cambridge to visit one of the 112 community exhibitions showcasing her Hold Still photography project.
Kate’s much-praised idea, which she launched in collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery, aimed to capture and document the spirit, hopes, fears and feelings of the nation during the coronavirus pandemic.
But as they walked up to view one of the billboards in Waterloo, London, Wills got distracted by a KFC restaurant and had a look through the window.
He waved to customers, who looked rather surprised, before carrying on the engagement.
Fans loved the photos, and it didn’t take long for KFC’s social media team to make a cheeky joke.
They tweeted one of the photos with the message: “William whispered quietly to himself; “Oh, I just can’t wait to be wing.”
But the employee later admitted he regretted missing a second, excellent pun from his message.
In a second message, they added: “I’m sad I didn’t call him His Royal Thighness in the main tweet tbh.”
People loved the comment, and were quick to reply to the funny message.
One wrote: “Hahaha this is Brilliant! Guy just wanted a zinger box meal.”
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Another added: “This is the best!.”
During their day out in London, Kate and William met Sami Massalami Mohammed Elmassalami Ayad, a volunteer at a community Food Hub in Hackney who appeared in one of the Hold Still portraits.
Grey Hutton captured him working as a volunteer at the Children With Voices Community Food Hub in the height of the Covid pandemic.
Sami is originally from Sudan but was raised in Brazil, moving to the UK to study for his PhD.
He said: “It was such a joy to meet the Duke ad Duchess and I can’t believe my picture made it to the final 100.
“I didn’t even know it was being submitted by my colleague a the food hub so it came as a massive shock when I got a call from the National Portrait Gallery saying the Duchess wanted to speak to me.
“She called me a few weeks ago and we had such a lovely conversation. She told me how she wanted to build a a snapshot of how Britain was coping in the pandemic, but to show all sides of what people have gone through and are still going through.
“She came across as really caring and dedicated, I was so impressed she took the tome to call me.
“I told her about the work they do at the food hub, and she agreed it’s such a vital project. I was lucky enough to help out there for a couple of months but they always need help throughout the year.”
Sami told William his colleague submitted the picture of him standing in the garden with his apron on without him knowing, to which the Duke laughed loudly and relied: “oh that’s great, you didn’t know at all? Love it. That’s brilliant.”
Kate wore an Alexander McQueen red coat for the engagement, and had a face mask on for the car journey there.
Kate and William then travelled to St. Bartholomew’s Hospital, where they met frontline workers including Joyce Duah, who took Hold Still’s ‘All in This Together’ photo.
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The specialist oncology pharmacist’s picture shows her two colleagues, Amelia Chowdhury and Dipal Samuel, who were redeployed to the intensive care unit at St Bartholomew’s at the height of the pandemic.
It was taken on 15 May during Joyce’s lunch break.
Kate said: “Thank you so much for the image. It had such an impact it captured the moment, it was a look behind the scenes.
“The story of what you experienced is so important.”
William said: “It is important for history purposes to show that actually happened.”