Kate reveals latest addition to her family ... a hamster

The Duchess of Cambridge
The Duchess of Cambridge

The Duchess of Cambridge has revealed that her family is enjoying the pitter-patter of tiny feet – after they took in a pet hamster.

Kate told a schoolgirl that a regal rodent called Marvin had joined the Royal Household as she opened a new children’s play area at Hampton Court Palace.

The duchess was talking to some children when she made the revelation to Darcey from St John the Baptist School in Hampton Wick, Surrey.

The nine-year-old said of her conversation with the Royal visitor: “She said she has a hamster, and Charlotte really likes it because the whiskers always tickle her face.”

Marvin joins Lupo the dog in the Cambridge family’s roster of known pets.

Lupo is a working cocker spaniel, a strain that is traditionally bred for work as gundogs – and can cause havoc around the house. Lupo joined the duke and duchess in December 2011.

The duchess was at the former royal palace, once the home of Henry VIII, to unveil its Magic Garden on Wednesday.

Wearing a summery grey-blue silk dress by Roksanda under a jacket by Michael Kors, the free-spirited duchess told how she was desperate to “take off her shoes and run around” the play area in the palace tiltyard as she was shown some of its unique design features.