Kate Middleton had an emotional phone call with a woman that lost two of her grandparents due to the virus. Hayley Evans, one of the finalists from the ‘Hold Still’ project, spoke with the Duchess on the phone about her entry and the sad backstory.
Hayley submitted a photo called ‘Forever Holding Hands‘, which showed her elderly relatives holding hands in the hospital. The photograph has been featured in the recently published book also titled ‘Hold Still’.
Unfortunately, both her grandparents passed away during the pandemic, spending the last days of their lives together.
Kate called up Ms Evans, and in the emotional call the two talked about how the photo came to be.
The audio from the call was posted on the Cambridge’s YouTube channel this Monday.
Ms Evans’ grandparents, Pat and Ron Wood, had been married for 71 years and were both admitted to the hospital in May 2020. At first, they were nursed separately, with staff pushing their beds together later on and giving them a room of their own.
Pat passed away in her sleep, with her husband Ron also passing away only five days later.
The call between the two went something like this: “I’m so sorry for your loss. I’m hugely grateful for you sending in such a personal photograph.
The Duchess continues: “I wanted to say a huge thank you to you for sending in the wonderful, very moving photograph of your grandparents.”
The book, which features all 100 finalists from the project, which were chosen by Kate and five other judges from thousands of entries, was released earlier this month, with copies being placed around Britain for people to find.
The release was announced by the Duchess in a video on Twitter, which showed her placing one of the books in the grounds of Kensington Palace.
The book-‘Hold Still: A Portrait of our Nation in 2020’-documents the everyday life in the pandemic, capturing how we have adapted and come together in these trying times. Since its release it has jumped to the top of the Amazon Best Sellers chart, currently standing at 26th place.
The book’s hidden across Britain also featured a note from the Duchess herself-the contents of which were recently revealed.
The note said: “The Hold Still book documents a photography project which captured a portrait of our nation as we lived through the first Covid-19 lockdown last year.
“The images tell the stories of the challenges we all faced, but also how we came together in the most extraordinary of times.
“I am proud to have worked closely with the National Portrait Gallery on this project and thrilled that the Book Fairies across the country are returning the images to the communities at the heart of Hold Still.
“Once you have finished looking through the book, please leave it somewhere else in your community for the next person to enjoy. With my very best wishes, Catherine.”
Kate started the project in May last year and encouraged the public to pick up a camera or smartphone and try to capture the “spirit and perseverance of the nation”.
All kinds of images were sent, from sleeping nurses, shielding elderly people and family scenes, the thousands of entries all capture a part of everyday life, be it new work environments or the isolation felt at home.
All the money raised from the sales of the book will be split between leading mental health charity Mind and the National Portrait Gallery.
You can catch the video on the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s new YouTube channel, which was started this May. This is only one of a series of videos showing the calls Kate has had with the finalists of the project.