William and Kate: their royal love story so far

Prince William and Kate Middleton met whilst studying at St. Andrews University.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Prince William and Kate Middleton met whilst studying at St. Andrews University.

Kate was the shy, sporty, History of Art student who caught Prince William’s attention when she walked in that infamous university fashion show - while William, of course, was a world famous Prince who won Kate’s heart with his charm, wit and kindness.

Together they are now one of the most photographed couples in the world. Kate, now the Duchess of Cambridge, showing that fairytales really do come true!

Kate and William's royal love story so far

The infamous fashion show that changed everything

Kate, then 19, took part in a St. Andrews University fashion show, strutting down the catwalk in a rather barely-there sheath dress. Prince William paid £200 for a ticket and apparently whispered to his friend, "She’s hot!". Although Prince William and Kate had been good friends prior to this night, seeing Kate confidently take to the catwalk obviously made Prince William see her in a totally different way. The young couple had their privacy protected up in Scotland, but the pair’s relationship was confirmed in 2004 when they were pictured skiing together.

Break-ups and make-ups

Prince William and Kate Middleton graduated from the University of St. Andrews in 2005. The prince embarked on his military career at Sandhurst, while Kate landed a job at Jigsaw as a buyer. The couple’s different jobs meant they were in a long distance relationship – but they still made time to see each other and hit their favourite nightclub hotspots when they were both in London!

However, it wasn’t all fun and games. The couple struggled with distance and the intense media attention on their relationship. As a result, the young couple split up in 2007.

Luckily, the split didn’t last long! Both William and Kate missed each other and couldn’t stand to be apart. They got back together later that year – much to the great relief of the general public who had already fallen in love with Kate.

"Waity Katie"

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This sweet photo is from 2008. Still very much in love and enamoured with one another, Kate had joined William at his graduation ceremony from the RAF. However, by this time the Duchess-to-be had been nicknamed "Waity Katie", as Prince William still hadn't popped the question to his long-term girlfriend.

Finally – a proposal!

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Finally, he put a ring on it! Prince William proposed to Kate during a getaway to Kenya in October 2010. A "very excited" Kate chose a navy Issa dress to complement her sapphire engagement ring, which belonged to William’s mum, the late Princess Diana, for the official engagement announcement photos.

A royal wedding to remember

From the Alexander McQueen dress to the cheering crowds and that iconic kiss on the balcony, the 29th April 2011 was certainly a day for the history books. The down-to-earth Duchess-to-be chose to do her own make-up for her big day, and Kate looked absolutely stunning.

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With her sister Pippa as her maid of honour, Kate had jaws dropping all over the world as she walked down the aisle of Westminster Abbey watched by millions to marry her prince.

Introducing the Duke & Duchess of Cambridge

So, the newly married couple wasted no time settling into their new roles as the Duke & Duchess of Cambridge. From glittering red carpet events – where Kate looked every inch a princess – to official events, the couple got stuck in to life as a married royal couple.

The new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge also embarked on their first international royal tours as a couple. From donning cowboy hats in Canada to showing off their dance moves in Tuvalu, Kate and William stole hearts around the world.

A new arrival

When Kate was pregnant the couple had to reveal their happy news a bit earlier than they’d wanted due to Kate’s intense morning sickness. She was suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum, which she spoke about this year on Giovanna Fletcher's podcast (opens in new tab), Happy Mum, Happy Baby.

Prince George Alexander Louis was born on 22 July 2013 and Kate emerged looking serene, of course!

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Kate has spoken about how becoming a mother for the first time was a “life changing moment” for her. The proud parents have been hands on raising little Prince George since he was born, and although he can be a handful, they’ve been loving every minute!

Kate has revealed over the years that little Prince George is a bundle of energy, with Prince William admitting “George is a right little rascal sometimes”!

Hello Princess Charlotte!

Fast-forward less than two years later and here the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are again on the steps of the Lindo Wing – this time with Princess Charlotte. Named Charlotte Elizabeth Diana after both her great-grandmother the Queen and her late grandmother Princess Diana. This little bundle was about to bring a whole lot more joy into William and Kate’s life.

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What a gorgeous family! William and Kate looked happier than ever with their beautiful brood at Princess Charlotte’s christening. For the children’s privacy and to ensure that they could have as ‘normal’ early lives as possible, the Duke and Duchess chose to raise their children in Anmer Hall, out in the countryside in Norfolk. While breaking from the tradition of living in Kensington Palace, countryside lovers Kate and William enjoyed the peace and freedom afforded to them away from prying eyes and paparazzi.

Royal tours

In 2016, Kate and Prince William left their children in the capable hands of Kate’s parents, and headed off on an official overseas royal tour of India and Bhutan. Although the Duchess of Cambridge admitted that they missed their little ones “terribly”, the week long trip also gave the new parents some precious time together as a couple.

Pictured trekking up to the breathtaking Tiger’s Nest Monastery arm-in-arm, it was clear that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were more in love than ever.

MORE: Prince William's adorable comment reveals how Princess Charlotte takes after her mum

Over five years after their fairytale wedding, photos of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in Canada also showed the world that the bond between this young royal couple was stronger than ever.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s royal tour to Canada also marked another big first for the couple. Their first overseas trip as a family of four! While Kate and William’s close bond was evident in every photo, it was little Prince George and a newly walking Princess Charlotte who totally stole the show!

Launching their own charitable campaign

One of the Duke and Duchess's most notable achievements as a couple has been the successful launch of their mental health campaign, Heads Together (opens in new tab). Launched along with Prince Harry, the campaign aims to end the stigma around mental health. Through a series of different events and through an online video campaign titled #OkToSay, the pioneering royals hope to start conversations between friends and family about mental health and any personal struggles they may have.

Welcoming Prince Louis

In April 2018, the Duke and Duchess welcomed their third child, and second son, Prince Louis.

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Born also at the Lindo wing, the couple looked delighted with their third bundle of joy, who is five years younger than their eldest son George.

Since then, Kate and William have enjoyed their youngest son's christening, and his first Buckingham Palace balcony appearance!

With the couple celebrating nine years together this year, who knows what's next for the royal couple's love story? We can't wait to find out!