The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have a packed schedule on their royal tour of the Caribbean, which means they need trusted aides by their side to keep things running smoothly.
The couple, who are carrying out engagements in the Bahamas today, are reportedly travelling with 15 members of staff, including bodyguards and communications officers.
The team is responsible for ensuring the couple’s every whim is catered for and that a complex programme of royal engagements goes off without a hitch.
Here, some of the trusted aides who have travelled to the Caribbean.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have a packed schedule on their royal tour of the Caribbean, which means they need trusted aides by their side to keep things running smoothly. Among them is assistant private secretary Natalie Barrows (pictured)
By her side: Private secretary Hannah Cockburn-Logie OBE, a former diplomat who joined the team in 2020, is seen carrying a gift for the Duchess as she walks behind her in Jamaica
Jean-Christophe Gray, Private Secretary to The Duke of Cambridge, pictured coming out of the plane second in Belize. He is a key figure in the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s household
David Watkins, Digital Communications Lead, who was hired from the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s staff after the couple left their royal roles
This woman in green is believed to be Daisy Northway, Communications Secretary
Kate’s assistant private secretary
Key among them are Kate’s right-hand women: private secretary Hannah Cockburn-Logie OBE, a former diplomat who joined the Cambridges’ team in 2020, and assistant private secretary Natalie Barrows, who has worked for the Royal Family for five years.
A private secretary – a role similar to a chief of staff – is there to facilitate a smooth running of the Duchess’s day, from coordinating her correspondence to organising her royal engagements.
They are also responsible for briefing the Duchess on any dignitaries or officials she might be meeting.
When meeting members of the public, the private secretaries will be seen walking just a few feet behind the Duchess, ready to step in at any moment to carry the flowers, cards and other tokens she might be handed by well-wishers.
And while Kate tends to carry only the smallest of handbags, if any at all, private secretaries are more likely to be found with a larger hold-all packed with the essentials the Duchess might need.
In the background: Natalie Barrows behind the Duchess of Cambridge in the Bahamas. When meeting members of the public, the private secretaries will be seen walking just a few feet behind the Duchess, ready to step in at any moment to carry the flowers, cards and other tokens she might be handed by well-wishers
Keeping Kate’s hands free: Moments later Ms Barrows had stepped in to take the flowers
Royal insider: Ms Barrows sits behind Prince William at a military parade in Kingston yesterday
Ms Barrows was spotted standing just behind Kate as the royal plane touched down in the Bahamas.
Taking care to stay out of the spotlight, Ms Barrows knew just the right moment to step in and take a bouquet from the Duchess so she could continue greeting.
As with all members of the royal household Ms Barrows keeps a low profile, both on official engagements, and online.
Little is known about her employment history but it is thought she started working with the Royal Family in 2017 and was first spotted on an engagement with the Duchess of Cambridge in 2018.
Since then she has become a vital member of Kate’s staff and is often spotted in the background of royal engagements, whether that is a hospital visit or trip to the Natural History Museum.
Royal engagements: Ms Barrows with the Duchess of Cambridge on a visit to Leicester City Football Club’s King Power Stadium following the devastating helicopter crash of 2018
Blending in: Ms Barrows with the Duchess of Cambridge on a visit to the Natural History Museum in October 2019
On hand: Ms Barrows (right) with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on St Patrick’s Day 2019
Kate’s private secretary
Ms Barrows reports to Ms Cockburn-Logie OBE MVO, who was hired in June 2020 to replace Oxford-educated Catherine Quinn, and is also on the royal tour.
According to her LinkedIn profile, Ms Cockburn-Logie took up the full-time post at Kensington Palace at the beginning of June 2020.
Ms Cockburn-Logie has 20 years of experience working in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and has spent much of her career representing the UK overseas, with postings to Slovenia, India and most recently Brussels.
She served as head of political and bilateral relations at the British High Commission in India, based in New Delhi, until September 2018.
Right-hand woman: Ms Cockburn-Logie with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge during their seven-day tour to India and Bhutan in April 2016, which she arranged and led
Hannah Cockburn-Logie on the visit to The Prince’s Foundation last month (left) and on a visit to the Scouts
In December 2017 Ms Cockburn-Logie was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in recognition of her services to the relationship between the UK and India, having led Prime Ministerial visits in both directions, as well as Prince William and Kate’s tour
It is likely she first met the Cambridges when she arranged and accompanied the couple on their seven-day tour to India and Bhutan in April 2016.
She also organised and led the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to India in November 2017.
In December 2017, Ms Cockburn-Logie was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in recognition of her services to the relationship between the UK and India, having led Prime Ministerial visits in both directions, as well as Prince William and Kate’s tour.
She was also awarded an MVO in 2008 for her work leading the Queen’s visit to Slovenia.
Mother-of-two Hannah grew up in Cleethorpes and Grimsby, attending Signhills infant and junior schools before moving on to Franklin Sixth Form College.
She studied her undergraduate degree in Modern History at the University of East Anglia before completing a Masters in Social and Public Policy at the University of Leeds.
Ms Cockburn-Logie started out her career as a press officer at the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office before moving up the ranks.
The social media whizz
Also on the tour is digital communications lead David Watkins, a social media whizz who was considered Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s ‘secret weapon’ and was headhunted by Prince William and Kate Middleton
Also on the tour is digital communications lead David Watkins, a social media whizz who was considered Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s ‘secret weapon’ and was headhunted by Prince William and Kate Middleton.
Watkins was the Sussexes digital communications lead and ran the @SussexRoyal Instagram account, helping the Duke and Duchess of Sussex recruit 11.5 million followers with candid snaps and artful videos.
He was among 15 loyal members of staff being made redundant as a result of their decision to step down as working royals and move to North America.
But in April 2020 he was snapped up by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to work on their digital communications and social media.
David was poached by Prince Harry and Meghan from fashion house Burberry in April 2019, and joined the couple as they launched their hugely successful Instagram page.
David will oversee the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s social media presence, which has struck a noticeably more relaxed tone – and even included a private underwater video of the couple scuba diving.
Wills’ right-hand man
Jean-Christophe Gray previously worked in the Government’s Treasury department, working alongside Mr Cameron and George Osborne during the austerity years
In February 2021, the Duke of Cambridge hired David Cameron’s former spokesman as his new private secretary.
Jean-Christophe Gray previously worked in the Government’s Treasury department, working alongside Mr Cameron and George Osborne during the austerity years.
Gray has a reputation as Whitehall’s ‘most assiduous bean counter’.
In 2012, Gray left a position as head of general expenditure policy with the Treasury to join the communications team at Downing Street, becoming then-prime minister Mr Cameron’s official spokesman.
The role taken by Gray was previously filled by Christian Jones, the most senior aide to the Duke of Cambridge. Prior to Jones, Simon Case held the role, but was reportedly poached by Boris Johnson for a government job.
Mr Gray is responsible for the overall running of the Duke of Cambridge’s diary and ensures the royal has everything he needs, when he needs it.
On the royal tour he was spotted disembarking the plane in Belize but has otherwise stayed out of the spotlight.