Prince Charles told William to stay at ‘boring’ St Andrews before Kate Middleton romance


PRINCE CHARLES encouraged Prince William to persevere with his “boring” university experience at St Andrews, where he met his wife Kate Middleton, according to royal biographer Robert Lacey.

William and Kate often draw praise for their public appearances together and have stepped up as leading royals in recent years as the Queen takes more of a back-seat role.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge famously met at St Andrews University as students after enrolling in 2001.

However, their romance, which saw them tie the knot in 2011, may not have been possible if it weren’t for Prince Charles, an unearthed account claims.

According to royal historian Robert Lacey, William found life in the seaside town of St Andrews “boring” and considered leaving.

Mr Lacey’s book, ‘Battle of Brothers: William, Harry and the Inside Story of a Family in Tumult’ was published in October last year.

Prince Charles told William to stay at 'boring' St Andrews before Kate Middleton romance

Prince Charles told William to stay at ‘boring’ St Andrews before Kate Middleton romance (Image: GETTY)

William and Kate: Attend James Bond premiere

William and Kate: Attend James Bond premiere (Image: GETTY)

In it, Mr Lacey claims a pep talk from Charles convinced William not to quit his art history course at St Andrews – the same degree Kate studied.

The author says William “had not anticipated quite how ‘boring’ – his word – life in a small Scottish seaside town could be”.

He claimed that William’s nights out were “clouded” by other students who were interested in the future king.

The Duke of Cambridge also reportedly said that one of the highlights of the experience was “shopping in the local Tesco”.

As he returned to London for Christmas after his first term, William was said to have told his father he would quit university.

William: Reportedly had pep talk from Charles

William: Reportedly had pep talk from Charles (Image: GETTY)

Mr Lacey quoted one as saying: “It would have been a personal disaster for William, he would have been seen as a quitter.”

Charles’ public image consultant Mark Bolland was quoted as saying: “It was no different from what many first-year students go through.

“We approached the whole thing as a wobble, which was entirely normal.

“St Andrews had a flexible course structure and when they heard that William might be happier majoring in geography, they made sure there were no roadblocks.”

Prince William: Future king at graduation

Prince William: Future king at graduation (Image: GETTY)

One aide reportedly told Charles to “demonstrate more fatherly backbone” towards William.

A conversation between the father and son resulted in William returning to university, where he switched to a four-year geography degree and graduated with a 2:1.

In his and Kate’s second year at St Andrews, the pair became friends and moved into a house together.

They eventually began dating before their relationship was made public in 2004 as they were pictured on a ski trip together at Klosters.

Speaking at the event, he said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at St Andrews and I shall be very sad to leave.

“I just want to say a big thank you to everyone who has made my time here so enjoyable.

“I have been able to lead as ‘normal’ a student life as I could have hoped for and I’m very grateful to everyone, particularly the locals, who have helped make this happen.”


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