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Kate Middleton and Prince William Make First Official Visit to Cornwall Since Taking on New Titles

Kate Middleton and Prince William Make First Official Visit to Cornwall Since Taking on New Titles

Kate Middleton and Prince William are checking off another royal first.

William, 40, and Kate, 41, immersed themselves in the maritime heritage of Cornwall on Thursday, marking the couple's first official joint visit to the region since becoming the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall following the death of Queen Elizabeth II in September.

The titles are one of several royal names that the couple, who are generally known as the Prince and Princess of Wales now, now have. Prince William and Kate also still retain their titles as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, granted to them by Queen Elizabeth on their wedding day in 2011 as well as a title for Scotland (Streathern) and one for Northern Ireland (Baron and Baroness Carrickfergus).

The Prince and Princess kicked off their visit at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall in Falmouth and, after being briefed about the rich maritime history of the southwestern tip of England, they were shown a poignant project in the workshop. Locals are working on the refurbishment of the Kiwi, a 14-ft sailing dinghy that was presented to the late Queen and her husband, Prince Philip, as a wedding present from the Royal New Zealand Navy.

RELATED: A Guide to the Royal Family's Official Titles (Including a Few New Ones)

Catherine, Duchess of Cornwall and Prince William, Duke of Cornwall laugh as they attempt to refurbish a boat during their tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall
Catherine, Duchess of Cornwall and Prince William, Duke of Cornwall laugh as they attempt to refurbish a boat during their tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

Chris Jackson - WPA Pool/Getty Images Kate Middleton and Prince William

The couple helped the project — before Prince William quipped, "If she sinks up here, we were never here, okay? You never saw us," according to a video shared on Twitter by Daily Express reporter Richard Palmer.

Catherine, Princess of Wales arrives at The National Maritime Museum
Catherine, Princess of Wales arrives at The National Maritime Museum

Samir Hussein/WireImage Kate Middleton in Cornwall

Prince William and Kate also chatted with a group who are taking part in the "Young and Talented Cornwall" project that provides financial support to help people from across Cornwall fulfill their potential, regardless of their financial means or background. The fund has given out around $500,000 to some 275 individuals in the past 10 years – including supporting future Olympic medal winners, international rugby players and musicians now playing in major orchestras.

Catherine Duchess of Cornwall smiles with local school children as they take part in a model boat race during the tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall
Catherine Duchess of Cornwall smiles with local school children as they take part in a model boat race during the tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

Chris Jackson/WPA Pool/Shutterstock Kate Middleton, the Princess of Wales

The royal couple then watched pupils from a local school taking part in a model boat race. Students said that Kate was better than Prince William at the activity, telling Cornwall Live that "William crashed a lot."

Benicio, a student who got to shake Prince William's hand, told the outlet, "We got to teach them how to ride boats and competed against them, which was really good."

Prince William, Duke of Cornwall and Catherine Duchess of Cornwall share a joke with local people working in the boat building workshop during their tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall
Prince William, Duke of Cornwall and Catherine Duchess of Cornwall share a joke with local people working in the boat building workshop during their tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

Chris Jackson/WPA Pool/Shutterstock Prince William and Kate Middleton

One of the museum's volunteers was a familiar face: Kate's former history teacher from her prep school, Jim Embury. The Princess of Wales gave him a big hug.

"The things you taught me, I now teach to my children," she told him, according to Cornwall Live.

Embury said of Princess Kate, "She was a fantastic student, and it was a great class."

Catherine, Princess of Wales (L) reacts as she is reunited with an old school teacher of hers following the tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall
Catherine, Princess of Wales (L) reacts as she is reunited with an old school teacher of hers following the tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

CHRIS JACKSON/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Outside the museum, Prince William and Princess Kate greeted well-wishers, shaking hands and posing for selfies with members of the public. Kate even knelt down to speak with a young girl sporting a tiara!

A toddler wearing a sweater with hearts on it also caught Kate's eye, with the royal interacting with the youngster.

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Catherine, Duchess of Cornwall with a toddler that playfully points at her after the tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall
Catherine, Duchess of Cornwall with a toddler that playfully points at her after the tour of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

Chris Jackson - WPA Pool/Getty Images Kate Middleton, the Princess of Wales

The second stop of their day was at The Dracaena Centre to learn about the support and services that the organization provides to local people with a mission of building a healthy, happy and mutually supportive society. The organization serves both Falmouth and Penryn, supporting around 10,000 people a year with services like family and youth support, children's activities, legal advice, sports and fitness and community food programs.

RELATED: Kate Middleton Is 'No Shrinking Violet' in Wake of Spare: 'She Is a Tough Woman,' Says Friend

Catherine, Princess of Wales, known as the Duchess of Cornwall while in Cornwall visits the Dracaena Centre
Catherine, Princess of Wales, known as the Duchess of Cornwall while in Cornwall visits the Dracaena Centre

Ben Birchall-WPA Pool/Getty Images

In addition to hearing about how The Dracaena Centre has supported parents and promoted their children's development through play and creativity, Kate participated in doing a lively rendition of "The Hokey Cokey." She danced along with children in a circle, doing choreographed movements.

The couple also showed off their competitive sides by facing off in a doubles ping pong match.

Prince William and Kate, Princess of Wales, known as the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall while in Cornwall, visit the Dracaena Centre in Falmouth
Prince William and Kate, Princess of Wales, known as the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall while in Cornwall, visit the Dracaena Centre in Falmouth

Ben Birchall/AP/Shutterstock Prince William and Kate Middleton

With Prince William being particularly focused on the issue of homelessness, there was an opportunity for them to chat with representatives from St. Petrocs, an independent charity working with individuals experiencing or at risk of experiencing homelessness in Cornwall.

Henry Meacock, chief executive of St. Petrocs, told Cornwall Live: "They both demonstrated a deep knowledge of homelessness. They're very genuine and have a keen interest."

Towards the end of their day, the couple visited the NHS Wellbeing and heard how they are providing community-based mental health and wellbeing support across the local area.

William, Prince of Wales and Duke of Cornwall and Catherine, Princess of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit the National Maritime Museum
William, Prince of Wales and Duke of Cornwall and Catherine, Princess of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit the National Maritime Museum

Hugh Hastings/Getty Images Kate Middleton and Prince William

The Duchy of Cornwall also has another role for William and his family: as is tradition, the estate — which owns property, farmland and other assets — provides an income for him as heir to the throne and pays for the family's staff and official business.

In recent years, Prince William has been shadowing King Charles III and making quiet visits to the Duchy, learning about the 130,000 acres of land with 160 miles of British coastline in 23 counties of England and Wales.

Catherine, Duchess of Cornwall smiles as she arrives for the tour of the National Maritime Museum
Catherine, Duchess of Cornwall smiles as she arrives for the tour of the National Maritime Museum

Chris Jackson - WPA Pool/Getty Images Kate Middleton, the Princess of Wales

The Duchy was established by King Edward III in 1337 to provide an income for the heir to the throne. King Charles, 74, used it also to pay for the life and public work of the heir to the throne and his family — and with Charles at the helm, it has become a major financial concern.

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Catherine, Princess of Wales and Prince William, Prince of Wales arrive at The National Maritime Museum
Catherine, Princess of Wales and Prince William, Prince of Wales arrive at The National Maritime Museum

Samir Hussein/WireImage The Duke and Duchess of Cornwall in Falmouth

Prince William has visited the area since he received the title, but this was the first time he and Kate had done so in an official capacity. And they aren't strangers to the area in their private downtime. William and Kate have taken their three children to the area's Isles of Scilly for summer breaks, and Prince William had several beachside holidays in Cornwall alongside his brother, Prince Harry, when he was a teen and in his early 20s, enjoying bodyboarding and surfing and hanging out with friends.