After a couple of years of dating the Prince and Princess called off their relationship for a few months, but there was a good reason behind the decision. Before Prince William and Kate tied the knot, the heir to the throne had to make a difficult decision about the future of their relationship and whether his now-wife could take up the mantle of a senior royal role.
The pair met while they were both students at St Andrews University, however two years after their graduation they briefly split up to give Kate the “best chance” to back out of royal life if she wanted to. Around this time William sought the advice of his father, then-Prince Charles and his grandmother the late Queen Elizabeth over his doubts about a future with Kate. In her book ‘The Making of a Royal Romance’, Katie Nicholl explained what happened during that meeting at Christmas 2006, a few months before the split in 2007.
She wrote: ” William had been having second thoughts and sat down with his father and his grandmother to have a frank discussion about his future with Kate. Both advised him not to hurry into anything.” After just a few months the couple got back together in the summer and later got engaged in 2010, with their glamorous royal wedding taking place on April 29, 2011. During their engagement interview with Tom Bradby they addressed the split, with William agreeing he wanted to give a Kate and her family a gradual introduction into royal life.
He said: “Her and her family, I really want to make sure that they have the best, sort of, guidance and chance to see what life has been like – or what life is like – in the family.” He also said: “We were sort of both finding ourselves as such and being different characters and stuff, it was very much trying to find our own way and we were growing up. It was just sort of a bit of space and a bit of things like that, and it worked out for the better.” Kate chimed in with her view of the situation: “I think at the time I wasn’t very happy about it, but actually it made me a stronger person.
“You find out things about yourself that maybe you hadn’t realised, or I think you can get quite consumed by a relationship when you are younger and I really valued that time for me as well although I didn’t think it at the time. Looking back on it.” Kate and William have since had three children – Prince George, 10, Princess Charlotte, eight, and five-year-old Prince Louis.
Speaking on this week’s Royal Round Up, Daily Express royal correspondent Richard Palmer said that William has made sure his own children are more “protected” than he and Prince Harry were growing up. He added: “I think a lot of people will probably say this is a good thing, and that it’s quite understandable.”