Pregnant Duchess of Cambridge reappears in public

Image copyright AFP

On a blustery but dry Horse Guards were two couples who represent the present and the future of an ancient institution.

For the Queen, this was the 108th time she's welcomed a visiting head of state. She's greeted presidents, monarchs and a grand duke.

For William and Kate, it was the first time they've been so involved in such an occasion. It was a novelty. It was on the job royal training.

It will one day become routine.

Inevitably, the focus was less on Anglo-Singaporean relations and more on a pregnant duchess. In the coming days, weeks and months aspects of this pregnancy will be lived out on a very public stage.

There'll be speculation about the due date and the sex of the child. The fact this baby won't, as things stand, become a king or queen , is unlikely to dampen the international fascination.

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