(LONDON) — Prince William and Duchess Kate have spent the last several years juggling life between their Kensington Palace home in London and their Anmer Hall home in Norfolk, close to where Prince George, 3, attends school several days a week.
With 2017 just around the corner, the couple, both 34, is making decisions about their future and what’s next for George and their 19-month-old daughter, Princess Charlotte.
William revealed in May that he and Kate were considering the next steps for George.
“They’re both doing very well at the moment, noisy but lovely,” William said of his children at an event at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London. “[We’re] just trying to sort out schools now. It’s going very well.”
William and his younger brother, Prince Harry, 32, both attended Wetherby School in Notting Hill, London. The school is now reportedly the top choice for George to attend once he turns 4 next July.
George currently attends Westacre Montessori School in Norfolk.
Wetherby School, where tuition runs $8,000 per year, is a 10-minute walk from Kensington Palace. William’s and Harry’s mother, the late Princess Diana, enrolled her sons at Wetherby, followed by five years at Ludgrove School in Wokingham, England. Both William and Harry then went on to Eton, a prestigious boarding school in Windsor, England.
It is assumed that George will follow in the same path as his father and uncle but royal sources say final decisions are yet to be made.
At some point, the couple inevitably will return to London as full-time working royals but it’s been important to William and Kate to give George and Charlotte a normal childhood away from the prying eyes of the paparazzi. Anmer Hall provides that environment but if George attends Wetherby School, Kensington Palace is expected to become the family’s full-time base.
William will also be making decisions in 2017 on his future with the East Anglia Air Ambulance Service, where he works as an air ambulance helicopter pilot. The couple’s Anmer Hall home is conveniently located close to the posting.
William is said to enjoy his meaningful role as a pilot. His Air Ambulance contract is up in March and he will need to make a decision on whether he carries on that role while the couple decides where Prince George attends his next school.
Another option could see William extending his helicopter position through the summer, according to the U.K.’s The Telegraph.
William and Kate will also expand their charitable work in the next year and take on additional royal duties.
The couple is expected to step up activity on their high-profile Heads Together mental health campaign and their Royal Foundation, both of which they formed with Harry. The royal trio have become high-profile advocates on a number of key issues close to their heart and have said they feel it is important to use their position to make a difference in the lives of the less fortunate.
William and Kate will also take the helm of several patronages recently passed onto them by Queen Elizabeth II, 90, as she and her husband, Prince Philip, 95, lighten their load. Kate, who can often be seen courtside at Wimbledon, will become Wimbledon Tennis Club’s official patron in 2017. William will take over from his grandmother as the Welsh Rugby Union’s patron.
Both new roles for William and Kate were announced by Buckingham Palace just before Christmas.
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