Kate back on royal duty after having Prince Louis

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Media captionThis is the Duchess of Cambridge's first engagement since giving birth to Prince Louis

The Duchess of Cambridge has returned to work following six months on maternity leave after the birth of her third child.

Catherine joined children at a forest school and wildlife garden in Paddington, west London.

The duchess helped them search for spiders and other "mini beasts" - something she said she regularly does with her own children.

As she left, the youngsters queued up to hug her and shouted "Bye princess!"

Prince Louis was born on 23 April, but Catherine's last official appearance was on 22 March with Prince William, helping to prepare a feast as part of the Commonwealth Big Lunch.

She has been seen in public since giving birth but that was for private events.

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Image caption Did she follow Meghan's lead and close her own car door...
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Image caption ... not this time

The duchess, who also has five-year-old Prince George and three year-old Princess Charlotte, visited the Sayers Croft Forest School and Wildlife Garden - which provides outdoor facilities to inner-city school children so they can experience wildlife.

She was joined by children from St Augustine's Primary School, who presented her with flowers on her arrival, and children from St Stephen's CE Primary School.

She was seen smiling and laughing with the children as they planted seeds together and crouched in bushes looking for insects.

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Image caption The duchess said she hunts for spiders "for hours" in her garden with her own children
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Image caption Last year the Sayers Croft Forest School had more than 5,500 visits by schoolchildren from across London
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Image caption Zoe Stroud, the interim head at Sayers Croft, said the duchess asked about the benefits of the experience to children's wellbeing
Image copyright PA
Image caption Catherine was given a warm welcome and send-off by the enthusiastic youngsters