Inside Kate Middletons inner circle: the royals squad of close friends
Ever since her relationship with Prince William came to light, the Duchess of Cambridge has been surrounded by a select group of people who act as her support system during life under the royal spotlight.
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Now it’s been 11 years since they tied the knot, we take a look inside Kate’s inner circle. Her friends hail from her school and university days – and while decades have since passed, the mum-of-three has remained very close to them.
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They have been by her side in almost every important milestone; her engagement to William, their royal wedding in 2011 and of course, when the couple welcomed their three children. Here’s everything you need to know about Kate’s closest friends…
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Lady Laura Meade
Lady Laura Meade, formerly Laura Marsham, is the daughter of Julian Marsham, 8th Earl of Romney. She is the wife of one of Prince William‘s best friends, James Meade, who co-delivered the best man’s speech at the royal wedding in 2011. The couple married two years later, and the Duke returned the favour and played usher at his Etonian friend’s big day.
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Lady Laura is Prince Louis’ godmother, while James is Princess Charlotte’s godfather. Here, Laura is pictured with Kate at the Houghton horse trials in 2019.
Lady Laura seen here with Kate and another friend Zoe Warren on Day 2 of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on 15 June 2016. Zoe’s daughter Zalie Warren was a bridesmaid at Prince Harry and Meghan’s wedding. She is another of Harry’s goddaughters and the daughter of one of his best friends, Jake Warren. The Warren family have long been connected to the royal family; Jake’s father John Warren is the Queen’s racing manager. The father-and-son team run Highclere Stud in Newbury together.
Emilia attended Marlborough College with Kate, and the pair have been tight ever since. Following the royal couple’s brief split in 2007, Emilia accompanied Kate on holiday to Ibiza. She has since been made one of Prince George’s godmothers, and currently runs an interior design company. It has previously been reported that she helped Kate redecorate Kensington Palace and Anmer Hall. Her husband David also attended Eton College with William.
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James, who is the son of Richard Meade, the Olympic three-day eventer, attended Eton College with Prince William back in 2000. Along with his wife Lady Laura, the couple live near Anmer Hall, which is William and Kate’s country home in Norfolk. In 2011, James delivered the part of the best man’s speech with Thomas van Straubenzee at William and Kate’s royal wedding. He is also godfather to Princess Charlotte.
Oliver is a good friend of both William and Kate’s; he was a student with them at St. Andrew’s University in Scotland. He is also one of Prince George‘s godparents.
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Sophie is close a close friend of Kate’s, so much so that the Duchess chose her to be one of Princess Charlotte’s godmothers. It’s therefore not surprising that Sophie, who lives close to Prince William and Kate’s country home Anmer Hall, asked her goddaughter to be a bridesmaid at her wedding.
The close friends go way back and have been pictured at various events together, from Wimbledon to Christmas Day church services in Norfolk. Sophie was also a guest at Pippa Middleton’s wedding and Prince Harry and Meghan’s royal nuptials. She once used to date Thomas van Straubenzee, Prince William’s close friend who also happens to be Princess Charlotte’s godfather. Sophie even joined the Cambridges during their skiing vacation in 2016.
Trini and Kate have been best friends since they were 14 years old after attending Marlborough school together. After Marlborough, Trini took an MA in politics at Edinburgh University, and worked as an assistant in the office of Jeremy Hunt MP. Trini is also a mother to a young son called Alexander, whom she shares with her husband Ted Foyle. The close friends have often been seen taking Alexander for a walk in Kensington Gardens.
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Hannah Carter, nee Gillingham, is one of Kate’s best friends from school. Both William and Kate attended her wedding to Robert Carter (the son of wealthy Norfolk landowner Robert Carter) in May 2012, the weekend coincided with the royal couple’s first wedding anniversary. Hannah is also one of Prince Louis’ godparents.
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Rose’s attendance is no surprise as she is the wife of David Cholmondeley, the 7th Marquess of Cholmondeley and Lord Great Chamberlain. The couple tied the knot following a short engagement in 2009, and they live at Palladian Houghton Hall in Norfolk, just over three miles away from Kate and William’s Anmer Hall.
Alicia is the younger sister of Olympic star William Fox-Pitt (pictured), and is a loyal friend of Kate’s from her Marlborough College days. The two friends took part in the famous Sisterhood rowing team, with Alicia saying at the time: “[Kate’s] been training with us. All being well she will be in the boat. She is a very gifted sportswoman and we played a lot of sport together at school.” Alicia married entrepreneur Sebastian Stoddart in July 2013, unfortunately, Kate missed the big day as she was due to give birth to Prince George.
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