Rumours of another royal baby scotched

DAY seven of the royal tour of New Zealand started with much excitement - news emerged that baby George might have a sibling on the way.

The story, which quickly spread around the world, came after Prince William reportedly told Cambridge woman Cynthia Read - who made New Zealand's official gift after Prince George's birth - that she might need to make another lace shawl soon.

But despite the buzz it wasn't long till Mrs Read clarified the situation, saying she had no plans to start work on a second gift any time soon.

"He said 'you might need to make another one sometime'. It wasn't soon or anything like that.

"It was just a throw-away comment, that's all. I don't think he meant anything particular by it."

Despite that, media interest yesterday continued to focus on whether Kate really was hiding a pregnancy.

Rugby star Richie McCaw was asked about it after speaking to the Duchess of Cambridge at a game and all eyes were on her when she visited Amisfield Winery in Queenstown later in the day. It was only then that the rumours were put to bed as she happily sampled a range of reds and aromatic whites.

Central Otago Pinot Noir chairwoman Lucie Lawrence, who escorted the Duchess, said she had "six or seven" tastes.

"She was drinking it. She really enjoyed drinking the pinot noir."

The couple, who separately made their way around various sampling stations, chatted with the winemakers and vineyard marketers.

Prince William offered Amisfield co-owner John Darby help with flying the helicopters used to fight frosts.

The royal couple also sampled some famous southern delicacies such as Bluff oysters, Stewart Island salmon, Fiordland venison, local cheeses and seasonal Central Otago fruit before heading off with some wine to enjoy later on.

The vineyard experience possibly steeled the couple for their next adventure of the day - a ride on the Shotover Jet where they enjoyed the 25-minute river trip, blasting by rocky outcrops, skimming around ragged boulders, and speeding through the narrow canyons.

Earlier they attended the Palm Sunday service at St Paul's Cathedral in Dunedin - proving a lifechanging experience for one group of teenagers - before a walkabout in the crowd, shaking hands and chatting.

Year 13 student Natalie Paterson and her friends were amongst the 470 people attending the service when the couple walked by. "I made a millisecond of eye contact and now my life is complete."

Before they descended the steep stairs to greet more than 3000 people gathered below, the couple signed the cathedral's guest book and Kate accepted a flower from a young girl.

Afterwards, they joined 8000 people at the Regal Rugby Fun Day at the Forsyth Barr Stadium.

The crowd screamed as William got revenge for his wife's sailing victory in Auckland on Friday, by guiding his Rippa Rugby team to a win.

The couple head to Christchurch today before a day off tomorrow.


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