It was a commonplace gesture, but it was also a moment of intimacy that went viral.
Prince William and Kate Middleton had been at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre to mark World Mental Health Day when he stopped mid-conversation to brush a lock of hair from her cheek, to which she responded with a warm smile.
A dozen years into their marriage, they seem as fond of each other as ever – which might help explain their popularity. The clip went viral on social media, with fans viewing the moment more than 206,000 times on TikTok alone.
It’s not the first time, of course. Protective William seems to make a point of reassuring his wife while on public duty.
On Thursday, he was spotted with his arm around his wife’s shoulder as she giggled with a member of the public on a visit to the Outfit Moray charity in Scotland.
It is, as these pictures above show, the small gestures that count.