Press Release: The Duchess of Cambridge joins The Book Fairies to mark the hardback release of Hold Still

The Duchess of Cambridge has joined The Book Fairies to hide copies of Hold Still, a collection of portraits published today by The National Gallery

Friday 7th May

The Duchess of Cambridge has joined The Book Fairies today to mark the publication of Hold Still: A Portrait of Our Nation in 2020!  150 copies are being hidden around the UK on release day 7th May by book fairies, the Hold Still judges, including The Duchess of Cambridge,  and contributors whose photographs feature in the book, each copy adorned with a gold book fairy sticker, gold ribbon, and a letter from The Duchess tucked inside. The Book Fairies, known for hiding books in public places for lucky finders, are excited to share this incredible book. Book fairies and helpers all around the UK are spending Friday 7th May hiding copies of Hold Still in places that gave them hope during lockdown. Photographs of the books in their hiding places will be posted online under the hashtag #HSBookFairies.

The Hold Still project was spearheaded by The Duchess, who is a Patron of the National Portrait Gallery. The ambitious community photography project, launched by The Duchess and the Gallery, aimed to create a unique collective portrait of the UK during the lockdown. People of all ages were invited to submit a photographic portrait they had taken during the first national lockdown, focusing on three core themes – Helpers and Heroes, Your New Normal, and Acts of Kindness. The submission period ran for six weeks between May and June 2020 and in this time the project received over 31,000 entries. From these, a panel of judges selected 100 portraits, assessing the images on the emotions and experiences they conveyed. Copies that are hidden today include a special note from The Duchess herself to welcome the reader to enjoy the book.

The book can be purchased here from the National Portrait Gallery website.


This event is on Friday 7th May, with pictures being shared online on this date and over the weekend.

Company info:

The Book Fairies, based in the UK, have over 10,000 book fairies around the world. Working with book publishers, TV and film promoters, authors and literary institutions, The Book Fairies’ main objective is to get books to new readers in fun ways. The Book Fairies turned four this March. Their website is

Media contact:

Cordelia Oxley is the ‘Book Fairy in Chief’ and she can be reached for comment on – please include a phone number if you’d like a call.

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