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Duchess Kate's 'right-hand woman' steps down

by Gemma Strong

The Duchess of Cambridge's private secretary is to leave her post this summer, Kensington Palace has confirmed. Rebecca Deacon is stepping down after ten years of service to the royal family. She has been Kate's right-hand woman since 2012, the year after the Cambridges married, and also played an important role in their wedding. Often seen by Kate's side at events, Rebecca's duties include organising official programmes and engagements and ensuring Kate is briefed on who she will meet.

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Rebecca Deacon has worked as the Duchess' private secretary since 2012

Prior to joining William and Kate's team, Rebecca, 34, worked for Prince Harry's charity Sentebale. The news of her departure follows reports that Rebecca is engaged to Adam Priestly and set to marry later this month. It is thought she has been given permission to hold the ceremony at the Chapel Royal at St James's Palace – where Prince George was christened four years ago - because of her strong ties to the royal family. The Duke and Duchess are expected to attend.

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A spokesperson for Kensington Palace confirmed: "After a decade of service to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, Rebecca Deacon will be stepping down as private secretary to the Duchess of Cambridge. She plans to leave the household in the summer. Their Royal Highnesses are incredibly grateful for all the hard work and support Rebecca has provided over the past ten years and wish her well in the next phase of her career."

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She previously worked for Prince Harry's charity Sentebale

Rebecca, the daughter of a female vicar and an army major, who passed away when she was three, was educated at The Royal School in Bath. She then studied English at Newcastle University. An insider previously told the Mirror: "She is the perfect companion because she is similar in age to Kate, is very organised and has lovely manners. She knows when to stand back and let Kate meet the public and when to step forward and introduce herself."

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