Duchess of Cambridge makes low-key appearance at royal bird shoot

Last Updated: Dec 27, 2011, 19:29 PM IST

London: Duchess Kate sidestepped a public relations crisis after she chose to stay in the background at the Royals’ Boxing Day bird shoot.

The Duchess of Cambridge had become the target of animal rights groups over the traditional event they describe as a ‘bloodbath’.

She was urged to emulate her late mother-in-law Princess Diana, who hated blood sports.

As a result, while the Duchess did turn up at the Sandringham event where royals gun down pheasants, she played a backstage role.

Animal rights activists celebrated her decision, seeing it as a breakthrough in their fight against killing animals for sport.

“We are pleased that Kate has decided not to take part in the annual bloodbath,” the Daily Star quoted League Against Cruel Sports boss Joe Duckworth as saying.

PETA president Ingrid Newkirk had written to the Duchess of Cambridge to warn her off shooting.

“The Royals have always had a hard time adjusting to social values,” Newkirk said.

“Rather than emulating Diana the Huntress, perhaps the British public is seeing a new Kate who is taking after Diana, the Princess of Hearts,” she added.

ANI