Kate Middleton

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Princess Kate is paying no mind to the baseless “KateGate” trend on social media. The royal, 42, was reportedly seen by eyewitnesses visiting a local shop in the U.K. over the weekend with her husband, Prince William. Despite the rampant speculation over her whereabouts, an onlooker saw Kate enjoying some time out and about.

“Kate was out shopping with William, and she looked happy and she looked well,” one onlooker told The Sun on March 16. “The kids weren’t with them, but it’s such a good sign she was healthy enough to pop down to the shops.”

Due to the incessant reports and rumors swirling around about Kate, the eyewitnesses told the publication they were “stunned” to see Kate and William, 41, at the shop, which is about a mile away from her Adelaide Home in Windsor.

That day, the Princess of Wales was also reportedly seen spending time with her and William’s children: Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis. The outlet reported that the young royals were playing sports.

Last week, Kate’s whereabouts and health became a widespread topic. After she posted a photo of her with her children on Mother’s Day on March 10, Instagram labeled the picture as “altered,” and the Associated Press informed news outlets that they had to avoid using the image because its source had “manipulated” it.

“At closer inspection, it appears that the source has manipulated the image,” the AP wrote in its message to journalists. “No replacement photo will be sent. Please remove it from all platforms, including social, where it may be visible.”

However, the Princess of Wales insisted that she was the one who played around with Photoshop and didn’t intend to cause a problem.

“Like many amateur photographers, I do occasionally experiment with editing,” Kate explained in a statement that she shared to her Instagram Stories and to X. “I wanted to express my apologies for any confusion the family photograph we shared yesterday caused. I hope everyone celebrating had a very happy Mother’s Day.”

However, the damage had already been done. A member of the Agence France-Presse (AFP) said on a radio show that Kensington Palace was “absolutely not” a “trusted source” anymore because of the edited photo that Kate shared.

Earlier this year, Kensington Palace announced that Kate had been hospitalized for a “planned abdominal” surgery. In its statement, the palace forewarned the public that she would not attend public events or duties until after Easter, which is on Sunday, March 31.

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