Kate Middleton Is Spotted for First Time Since Death of Queen Elizabeth

·2 min read

Kate Middleton is mourning her grandmother-in-law.

The newly minted Duchess of Cornwall and Cambridge, 40, looked somber as she drove in Windsor, England on Friday, emerging for the first time since Queen Elizabeth died. The royal was somber in sunglasses and a black mock turtleneck, paired with pearl drop earrings.

Kate did not join her husband Prince William for the journey north to Balmoral Castle in Scotland on Thursday, where the Queen had been on summer holiday since July. After announcing that her doctors were "concerned" for her health, Buckingham Palace said in simple statement that the 96-year-old monarch died "peacefully" at her beloved Balmoral on Thursday afternoon, local time.

While William joined Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex to rush to Her Majesty's bedside, where they met with Prince Charles (now King Charles III), Princess Anne and later, Prince Harry at the castle. Kate likely stayed behind for their children's first day of school.

RELATED: King Charles and Queen Camilla Return to London Following Death of Queen Elizabeth at Balmoral

Kate Middleton
Kate Middleton

James Whatling/MEGA

The start of term is especially momentous for Prince George, 9, Princess Charlotte, 7, and Prince Louis, 4, this year, as the young royals enroll as first-time pupils at Lambrook School.

For more on Kate Middleton, listen below to our daily podcast PEOPLE Every Day.

Fortunately, Kate and the Queen spent quality time together just weeks ago, when she and William visited Balmoral with their kids, a cherished summer tradition.

As planned, King Charles and Camilla, Queen Consort, returned to London Friday, where they were greeted with cheers and choruses of "God Save the King."

King Charles III, left, and Camilla, the Queen Consort, walk past floral tributes left outside Buckingham Palace following Thursday's death of Queen Elizabeth II, in London,
King Charles III, left, and Camilla, the Queen Consort, walk past floral tributes left outside Buckingham Palace following Thursday's death of Queen Elizabeth II, in London,

Yui Mok/AP/Shutterstock Sept. 9. 2022: King Charles and Queen Camilla outside Buckingham Palace following Queen Elizabeth's death

RELATED: Why Kate Middleton Didn't Travel to See Queen Elizabeth in Scotland with Other Royals

Their arrival was poignant, as it marked their first time in the capital city as monarch and consort.

In other firsts on Friday, Charles will host an audience with newly elected Prime Minister Liz Truss and deliver his inaugural televised address as monarch.

On Saturday morning, he will be formally proclaimed King by the Accession Council — and in a historic twist, the rite will be televised for the first time.