It was always understood that Prince William, Kate Middleton, and their children Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis would eventually move into Windsor Castle after Her late Majesty’s death. The late Queen had been living at Windsor throughout the pandemic and had made it her permanent home as of late. She was still on summer holiday at Balmoral when William, Kate, and their children moved into Adelaide Cottage on the Windsor estate to be closer to her in the earliest days of September. Then, on September 8, Her late Majesty died at Balmoral, aged 96.
Some speculated that William and Kate would move immediately into Windsor Castle, but they are keen to hold off on that, at least temporarily—likely to not induce another shakeup in the children’s lives, of which there have been many in the past six weeks. People reports, however, that the Prince and Princess of Wales will eventually make the move to the 1,000-year-old Windsor Castle, the ancestral seat of the British royal family and the largest and oldest occupied castle in the world. One close family friend tells the outlet that theirs is a life of a “modern royal family doing normal things” and, for now, they seem content at Adelaide Cottage, with a source adding “they love that the kids can go out on their bikes and cycle around the estate, and they are all really excited to meet everyone. It’s a real little community.”
The family of five’s first week in their new home was “very tense,” OK reports—not only did George, Charlotte, and Louis begin school at Lambrook, but within a week of arriving in Windsor, the Queen passed away unexpectedly.
“Things were very tense that week,” a family friend says. “It was not exactly the settling-in period they had hoped for.”
Since the Queen’s death, William and Kate were named the new Prince and Princess of Wales and, People reports, the couple have stepped up in the wake of Her late Majesty’s death. Royal expert Katie Nicholl calls the couple’s transition into their new roles “seamless” and says that the pair have “stepped up to the plate,” telling the outlet “William’s years of being mentored by his grandmother and his father have really paid off, because the transition to Prince of Wales has been seamless. Kate has also effortlessly moved into a role with so much weight and history and is already making it her own.”
William is closer to his father, King Charles, than ever, Nicholl says, adding that they “speak on the phone most days. They are very aligned in their vision of the future of the monarchy and united over the notion of sovereignty, as one of my contacts told me.” A source speaking to People seconded this, adding “talking about the future of the country and their future roles has strengthened their bond.”
“He [William] is going to continue being by his father’s side, I suspect, at key constitutional events such as the State Opening of Parliament and state dinners,” Nicholl says. “That image of the King and Queen Consort and the Prince and Princess of Wales issued recently by the Palace was a very important image of what the modern monarchy and reign of King Charles will look like.”
Even with all of the upheaval of the past six weeks—a move, a new school for the kids, the death of a beloved family member, new jobs—William and Kate have remained strong, Nicholl says. “While they have both taken on new titles and more senior roles within the royal hierarchy, they have done so while staying very true to who they are and the causes they have championed,” she says.
Rachel Burchfield is a writer whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family. In addition to serving as the royal editor at Marie Claire, she has worked with publications like Vogue, Vanity Fair, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, and more. She cohosts Podcast Royal, a show that provides candid commentary on the biggest royal family headlines and offers segments on fashion, beauty, health and wellness, and lifestyle.
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