The Duchess of Cambridge has launched a book with the National Portrait Gallery to mark the anniversary of the UK’s first lockdown.

The 39-year-old royal hopes ‘Hold Still: A Portrait Of Our Nation In 2020’ – a book of 100 photographs illustrating the last 12 months of the pandemic – will become a “lasting record of what we were all experiencing” amid the health crisis.

The duchess wrote on Instagram: “When we look back at the COVID-19 pandemic in decades to come, we will think of the challenges we all faced – the loved ones we lost, the extended isolation from our families and friends and the strain placed on our key workers. But we will also remember the positives: the incredible acts of kindness, the helpers and heroes who emerged from all walks of life, and how together we adapted to a new normal.

“Through Hold Still, I wanted to use the power of photography to create a lasting record of what we were all experiencing – to capture individuals’ stories and document significant moments for families and communities as we lived through the pandemic. C (sic)”

‘Hold Still’ features photographs of key workers and people who found themselves isolated amid the lockdown, as well as capturing some more uplifting moments of the crisis.

People of all ages were encouraged to contribute towards the book and more than 31,000 portraits were submitted for the project.

Dr Nicholas Cullinan, director of the National Portrait Gallery, said: “The photographs submitted have helped to create a unifying and cathartic portrait of life in lockdown.”

‘Hold Still’ is set to go on sale in bookshops and online on May 7, and proceeds from the book will be used to support mental health and arts projects in the UK.