The Prince and Princess of Wales were somewhat busy – for them – last week, making a visit to Northern Ireland, then both William and Kate had solo events. It felt like whatever is happening in their marriage, they’ve negotiated some on-camera couple time. That being said, well before the death of QEII, there had been a significant shift in their marriage. That was the whole reason why Kate and the children were being shuffled off to Windsor in the first place, and why it felt like William was going to be based at Kensington Palace. Throughout the year, they’ve been giving off “living separately” energy, complete with shared custody of the kids. Well, interestingly enough, it looks like this past weekend was not William’s weekend with the kids.
Prince William returned to Scotland to make a personal pilgrimage back to Balmoral for the first time since the funeral of his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. The Prince of Wales is thought to have spent a weekend at Craigowan Lodge, which was one of Her Majesty’s favourite boltholes on the Scottish estate and was used on less formal occasions, where he went deer stalking.
It would have been a bittersweet reunion for the first in line to the throne, who was last in Scotland just over a month ago as he rushed to be by the Queen’s side as she died on the 50,000-acre estate on September 8.
A source told the Daily Mail’s Richard Eden: ‘He stayed at Craigowan Lodge, where Her Majesty used to stay. He was there just for the weekend.’
By stalking deer the Prince follows in the footsteps of both his grandmother and his grandfather, Prince Philip, who introduced him and his brother Harry to it while they were boys. Deer stalking is the act of culling ageing stags that would otherwise die in the winter, with William shooting his first when he was 14 years old, something that is said to have left him delighted at the time. The activity, which has been a shared passion among generations of the Royal Family, was encouraged by William’s father King Charles III, while Princess Diana used to jokingly call him ‘my killer Wales’.
William is not thought to have been joined in Scotland by his wife Catherine, who is herself a keen markswoman, and their children. A spokesman for Kensington Palace declined to comment.
So a man leaves his wife and children at home for the weekend to go and stay at a Scottish hunting lodge… by himself? While those sources make a point of noting that Kate and the kids weren’t there, they aren’t saying he was there alone. I imagine Kate took the kids to Bucklebury and William brought a side chick. Which brings up something I’ve been wondering… in some ways, it will be much easier for William and Kate to hide their separate lives now, as Prince and Princess of Wales. In other ways, it will be more difficult, right? Because there’s even more focus on them. The British tabloids know a lot but they’re keeping quiet for the moment. I wonder when some of this stuff will start to come out.
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Cover Images.