Prince William and Kate Middleton attended their first official function together as man and wife on Thursday night. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were the guests of honor at the 10th annual Absolute Return for Kids (ARK) gala dinner at Perk’s Field in London, near the couple's future city home: Kensington Palace.

Middleton, 29, looked stunning in a floor-length peach organza gown blown up with Swarovski crystal, created by the British designer Jenny Packham,complimented by LK Bennett shoes and the sapphire ring that once belonged to William’s mother, Princess Diana.

The couple was seated across from each other at a 25-seat table, which they shared with Tom Ford, Jemima Khan Prince Pavlos of Greece, Princess Marie-Chantal and Countess von Bismarck, to name a few. But even though they weren’t seated nect to each other, the newlyweds kept “looking at each other and smiling,” Us Weeklyreports. The couple left the party at around 10.30pm, missing the entertainment provided by the Kings Of Leon and DJ Mark Ronson.

The event marked the launch of a four-year long collaboration between his own charity, the Prince William and Prince Harry foundation (now renamed the Foundation of Prince William and Prince Harry and The Duchess of Cambridge) and ARK, which helps children in the U.K. and developing countries around the world.


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“Harry and I find ourselves in a position to be able to help. I really believe that individuals can make a serious difference – whether it's through wealth, through position, or some other advantage,” William, 28, said in his speech that received a standing ovation. “Catherine and I hope to use our philanthropy as a long-term catalyst for meaningful change,” he told the crowd, which included Elizabeth Hurley, David Furnish, Kevin Spacey and Colin Firth.

After the newlyweds watched the performance of a troupe of Mexican divers in tight swimming trunks, William said in his speech that he was looking forward to “the conversation I will have with my grandmother about the men in the most tight Speedos I have ever seen.” William got another laugh from the 1,000 guests when he pondered the new acronym for his foundation: F. P. W. P. H. A. T. D. C.

ARK founder Arpad Busson was thrilled the royal couple were the evening's guest of honor. William and Kate “bridge the generations,” Busson told People. “We need to get young philanthropists involved with us. There could not have been a better choice.”

By the end of the knight, a whopping $28 million had been raised on behalf of Absolute Return for Kids (ARK).

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