Kate Middleton 'perfectly at home in Balmoral' before Meghan snubbed visit

Kate Middleton 'perfectly at home in Balmoral' before Meghan snubbed visit

Kate Middleton was ‘shy bride-to-be’ says expert

The Royal Family has endured some of its most tumultuous events in recent times. Only last month, Prince Philip sadly passed away aged 99. This was shortly before the Queen readied to celebrate her 95th birthday, and Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge marked their tenth wedding anniversary.

Things had become hectic even before this, however.

The fallout of Meghan and Prince Harry has plagued the family ever since they announced their departure last year.

Before this the pair had revealed they were no longer happy as senior working royals.

Many pay their respects to Kate who, like Meghan, entered the family as an outsider and a “commoner” but gelled into the fold almost seamlessly.

Kate Middleton: The Duchess passed the Balmoral Test before Meghan Markle snubbed her invite

Kate Middleton: The Duchess passed the Balmoral Test before Meghan Markle snubbed her invite (Image: GETTY)

Prince Philip: The Duke of Edinburgh sadly passed away last month aged 99

Prince Philip: The Duke of Edinburgh sadly passed away last month aged 99 (Image: GETTY)

One pivotal moment of Kate’s becoming a royal came after she was invited to Balmoral, an event that has been described as the “Balmoral Test” for those entering the Firm from the outside.

Kate made her first visit in 2009, two years before she and William married; just a year after her parents were invited to a shooting weekend there which hinted an engagement was on the horizon.

According to Christopher Andersen, a royal author, writing in his book, ‘William and Kate: A Royal Love Story’, Kate passed the Balmoral Test with flying colours.

He said: “It was one thing to be asked to accompany Wills on club-hopping excursions in London and Edinburgh.

“It was quite another to be invited to Balmoral, which William’s great-great-great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria called ‘this dear Paradise’.

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Balmoral: Kate pictured with the Queen travelling to church near Balmoral

Balmoral: Kate pictured with the Queen travelling to church near Balmoral (Image: GETTY)

“By all accounts, Kate was the first girl Wills ever brought to Balmoral – in a large part because, said a royal insider, ‘He must have known how much she would love it.'”

More importantly, he added: “As Kate stood on the riverbank angling for salmon, trout and pike, it quickly became clear to one member of the Balmoral staff that she seemed ‘perfectly at home here’.”

The Queen showed how significant Kate was to the family when, according to royal author Robert Jobson, she “ensured that the young couple would have a secure and romantic bolt-hole on Balmoral estate in the Scottish Highlands“.

None of this would have happened without Charles’ approval given that Balmoral is the Prince of Wales’ favourite place to visit, Mr Jobson added.

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Prince Harry: Balmoral holds a special place in the hearts of all royals

Prince Harry: Balmoral holds a special place in the hearts of all royals (Image: GETTY)

Prince Charles: Balmoral is said to be one of Charles' favourite residences in the UK

Prince Charles: Balmoral is said to be one of Charles’ favourite residences in the UK (Image: GETTY)

Things were largely different when it was Meghan’s turn to take the test.

It is claimed that she first visited the residence in 2017, but her first official visit came after she married Harry in 2018.

It is not known how she fared in the test but many have used events that came afterwards as a means to gauge the results.

Meghan is vehemently against hunting and field sports, two primary pastimes at Balmoral.

In 2018, when the Royal Family travelled to the residence over the August bank holiday, Meghan and Harry skipped the chance to take part in the traditional grouse hunt.

According to The Sun, many speculated that Harry shunned the activity because of Meghan’s animal rights history.

This was after he missed out on the traditional grouse hunt on Boxing Day in 2017 so as not to upset her.

Royal residences: Balmoral is just one of a handful of residences the Royal Family has in the UK

Royal residences: Balmoral is just one of a handful of residences the Royal Family has in the UK (Image: Express Newspapers)

More telling perhaps is when Meghan and Harry snubbed the Queen’s invite to visit Balmoral a year later, in 2019.

The pair at the time said that Archie, who was four months old, was too young.

William and Kate did go with their children.

A source told The Sun: “Harry and Meghan had no plans to go to Balmoral this summer as they felt Archie was too young.

Meghan Markle: Meghan snubbed her Balmoral invite in 2019

Meghan Markle: Meghan snubbed her Balmoral invite in 2019 (Image: GETTY)

“It’s a bit odd, as his age didn’t stop them taking him to Ibiza for a week and then to see Elton John in France.

“If they want privacy or protection — which was Harry’s excuse for taking private jets — there is no more protected or private holiday destination than the Queen’s Scottish home.

“It’s all very hunting, shooting, fishing up at Balmoral, so maybe that put Meghan off.

“She has never been to Balmoral and the Queen was disappointed they’re not going.”

Published at Tue, 04 May 2021 14:32:00 +0000