KATE Middleton was today spotted going for a drive near her family's new home in Windsor.
The Duchess of Cambridge looked relaxed behind the wheel during her first weekend at "no-frills" Adelaide Cottage.
Kate, Wills and their three children this week swapped Apartment 1A Kensington Palace in London for the rural four-bed abode.
The family-of-five are said to have "travelled light", without expensive new furniture and fittings, or demanding a mass refurbishment.
They chose the property so they can take George, nine, Charlotte, seven, and Louis, four, on the nine-mile school run to Ascot when classes start next week.
All three siblings’ uniforms for £7.000-a-term Lambrook School have been purchased, and Kate and Wills, both 40, want to be regular “school gate parents”.
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They have brought their black cocker spaniel Orla but will have no live-in staff or nanny for the children and have asked for nothing other than a “lick of paint”, The Sun understands.
Kate and Wills’ low-key move compares to a £2.4million saga when Prince Harry and Meghan moved nearby when they were gifted Frogmore Cottage by the Queen as a wedding present in April 2018.
Walls were knocked down to turn it into a ten-bed home and the entire property needed fresh plumbing, rewiring and decoration.
It was then given a celebrity-style makeover complete with a trendy copper bathtub.
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The Sussexes moved out after only six months when they quit royal duty to live in America and now have an £11million nine-bedroom, 16-bathroom mansion in Montecito, California.
Last night Ingrid Seward, editor-in-chief of Majesty Magazine, said: “This will be the first weekend Kate and William have spent at Adelaide Cottage as a family. It’s a lovely moment for them all.
“They had to have moved in this weekend, because the children have to start at their new school next week.
“The renovation is no-frills, by royal standards — and is certainly in stark contrast to the £2.4million work Harry and Meghan had done on Frogmore Cottage. It will have been a builder’s finish.”
Kate and William spent around a year searching for a home in Windsor so the children could go to school together.
They settled on Adelaide Cottage, as first revealed by The Sun, because they believed it needed no major renovations.
They decided to go with existing furniture and fittings but had a fresh coat of paint to make it feel like home for the children.
They are keeping Anmer Hall in Norfolk, where they enjoy spending school holidays and Christmas.
Like Kensington Palace in central London, that did need work to bring it up to scratch.
Apart from some treasured possessions, clothes and toys, most of their possessions have stayed at Anmer.
The renovation is no-frills, by royal standards — and is certainly in stark contrast to the £2.4million work Harry and Meghan had done on Frogmore Cottage.
Kensington Palace will largely be used for staff and as an office.
A spokesman for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge did not want to comment.
Adelaide Cottage is a ten-minute walk from the Queen's apartments but also just 800 yards from Frogmore Cottage.
The Sussexes came under fire for their spending spree there — before moving out just six months after unpacking their possessions.
Five cottages were knocked through to make it a ten-bed home during the 12-month project.
Harry and Meghan are said to have demanded a yoga studio with a floating floor.
The makeover was overseen by Soho House interior decorator Vicky Charles, and it was claimed vegan paint adorned the freshly plastered walls.
The couple took up residence in April but by the end of the year had quit for Canada, then moved to the US in spring 2020.
Speaking in her much-lambasted interview last week in magazine The Cut, the Duchess denied there was a lavish makeover.
Harry has since paid back the funds and rent.
They gave the keys to Princess Eugenie and her husband Jack Brooksbank in autumn 2020.
But Harry and Meghan renewed their lease this April and are using the house as their UK home as it comes with Windsor Castle armed security.
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Harry is currently suing the Home Office claiming it was “illegal and unfair” to remove his taxpayer-funded armed guards when he quit royal duty.
He has offered to pay for protection but police chiefs have insisted they do not provide “guns for hire”.
HARRY and Meghan are expected back in the UK any day — and will be neighbours of William and Kate.
The royal, 37, and his wife, 41, are to stay at Windsor’s Frogmore Cottage.
The warring brothers have barely spoken since the Sussexes quit royal duty and sources said there were no plans for the two families to meet.
On Monday Meghan is due to talk in Manchester about gender equality — her first speech in Britain since moving to the US.
She and Harry will be in Dusseldorf on Tuesday before a London charity do on Thursday.
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