The Cambridges spent the ‘bank holiday weekend’ in Balmoral with the Queen

The Duke And Duchess Of Cambridge Visit Scotland - Day Six

I’ve been waiting for any kind of confirmation about the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visiting Balmoral, and finally we have it. The confirmation comes via a Katie Nicholl-exclusive in Vanity Fair. Nicholl hasn’t had any insidery stories in VF in a few months and I wondered where she was and what she was up to. Maybe she just took the summer off, like the Keens. But Nicholl is back and she’s here to spread sugar over the fact that Will and Kate only took the kids to Balmoral at the very end of the summer, after Prince Andrew and Fergie left. And only for what sounds like three or four days.

The British summer may be over, but Queen Elizabeth’s spirits were lifted when she was joined by the Cambridges over the Bank Holiday weekend at Balmoral, her beloved Scottish estate. Vanity Fair can reveal that Prince William, Kate Middleton, and their three children spent the past week in Scotland, marking their first family get-together since Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, died in April.

The long weekend has become an annual fixture in the royals’ diaries and according to a source is one the Queen and the Cambridges always look forward to. “William, Kate, and the children have been enjoying some family time in Scotland and they have just spent some special time with the Queen,” the source says. “They always enjoy going up to Balmoral, they love the outdoors and walking in the hills and spending quality time with family. It’s where William spent a lot of his childhood and it’s important to him that his children experience what he did as a young boy.”

While at Balmoral, William, Kate, George, 8, Charlotte, 6, and Louis, 3, spend their time taking long walks in the countryside, fishing, horseback riding, and cycling. Barbecues also play an important role during their visits, as Prince Philip was known for cooking for his family al fresco using his own specially engineered mobile barbecue. Last summer, William and Kate enjoyed what was to be their last holiday with the Queen and Prince Philip when they visited after the lockdown.

The week away has also been an opportunity for the Cambridges to spend time with Prince Charles and Camilla, who are at Charles’ Scottish retreat, Birkhall. Charles inherited the property after his grandmother, the Queen Mother, died in 2002. It holds special significance for the royal as it’s where he proposed to Camilla, and the couple honeymooned there after their wedding in 2005.

According to a family friend, the Queen always looks forward to the last weekend in August which is reserved for her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. “It has become a tradition in recent years that the Bank Holiday weekend is the final family get together before Christmas and everyone is invited. In the past it has turned into one big sleepover with lots of the Queen’s grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Her Majesty enjoys it immensely.”

When the Cambridges stay at the Queen’s Scottish castle, the monarch has been known to leave small personally chosen gifts on her grandchildren’s beds.

[From Vanity Fair]

I wonder if the Earl and Countess of Wessex were still at Balmoral with their kids this past weekend? Those are the Queen’s only young grandkids at this point, but I have no idea how many great-grandchildren were even at Balmoral. It feels like Princess Eugenie already left with baby August, probably around the time Andrew and Fergie left. Maybe Zara and Mike are up there with their kids, who knows.

Anyway, it sounds more like William and Kate hate bringing their kids up to Balmoral so they wait to the last minute, right? And it also sounds like the Queen basically puts a bow on their laziness and says “oh, just spend the bank holiday in Scotland, that’s good enough.” Most of the other Windsors spend at least a full week at Balmoral, if not two or three weeks. Charles and Camilla tend to spend four to six weeks in Scotland every summer. And I’m sure William and Kate breezed by Birkhall too. Very fishy.

The Duke And Duchess Of Cambridge Visit Scotland - Day Six

Britain's Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge try land yachting at St Andrews

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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48 Responses to “The Cambridges spent the ‘bank holiday weekend’ in Balmoral with the Queen”

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  1. Becks1 says:

    So we have “confirmation” they went to Balmoral but no pics? I’m not sure I buy it; Will and Kate love to put out pics that emphasize their relationship to the queen and remind people that they are the “real” royals. But maybe they did go for a night or two on their way home from wherever they’ve been.

    This is your daily reminder that we have not seen them since July 11.

    • Cessily says:

      Wonder where they have been for the majority of the summer?

    • Sofia says:

      Didn’t lawyers send out letters warning the media not to take photos of royals at Balmoral? That could have been why no photos. Although if KP gave permission, the pictures could have been published.

      • Nic919 says:

        They did but it was mostly about Andrew. And the paps could have photographed them before they go to balmoral as was done for the flybe incident.

      • Debbie says:

        Sofia, you really think a woman who made a photoshoot out of a dead man’s funereal would let a mere warning letter stop her from taking pictures while on vacation?

      • BothSidesNow says:

        @ Debbie, well said, my dear!!

    • Nic919 says:

      I have my suspicions about this as well. The entire article is massively vague. If they did go it was likely separate arrivals and it seems even this article like they went for as little time as possible with a bunch of ther people there too.

    • iconoclast59 says:

      Ha, @Becks1, I was thinking the same thing — pics or it didn’t happen!

    • Christine says:

      Agreed, and would Kate really miss an opportunity to pose one of the kids on anything considered Philip’s? Honestly, I’m shocked we haven’t seen a pic of Wills and George at a grill yet.

  2. M says:

    First she says they went for a long weekend, then she says they stayed a week, so which is it? I suspect the answer is neither. Bill and Kathy don’t do anything without publicizing it (unless it’s their vacation abroad), so I don’t believe this article one bit.

  3. The Hench says:

    They love Balmoral SOOO much that, despite the fact they have been AWOL for weeks, they only spent three days there 🙄

    So, where have they been since the Isles of Scilly? Househunting in Berkshire? Finalising the details of their separation? Parsing the new paperback edition of Finding Freedom?

  4. Andrew’s Nemesis says:

    The Gruesome Twosome probably have Mustique-burnished tans. I’m sure they flew by private jet as well. Hypocrisy, thy name is Keenbridge.
    I wonder what Kate is going to be keen about in the coming months? Isn’t it about time for her to be ‘coming into her own’ and ‘preparing for leadership’? What about her paint by numbers foundation for learning kid’s stuff?

    • mariahlee says:

      I’m sure they have a number of “finding her voice” and “preparing to be Queen” stories prepared for the fall. KP is nothing if not predictable.

      • SnoodleDumpling says:

        At this point I think they use madlibs to generate their articles, with maybe some light tweaking to prevent accusations of plagiarism.

  5. Bordelais says:

    For someone who proclaimed in May that “Scotland is incredibly important to me and will always have a special place in my heart”, the FFK doesn’t seem to want to spend much of his free time there. Popping up for a weekend isn’t going to dampen the “Tartan Disneyland” accusations.

    I can understand that Balmoral may bring back sad memories of when he found out his mother had died, but he could easily have spent two/three weeks in other areas that held significance e.g. St Andrews, and then finished with the weekend in Balmoral.

    I suppose it’s much easier to hold secret meetings with ex Prime Ministers about Scottish independence, than to actually spend time in Scotland.

    • Lizzie says:

      House shopping has kept them busy all summer.

    • Lady D says:

      “Scotland is incredibly important to me and will always have a special place in my heart”,
      “We are very much not a racist family”
      To me, he sounds both pompous and dishonest when he speaks his carefully rehearsed spontaneous response to questions. Maybe it’s because I don’t like him, but he gives off a ‘One must placate the peasants, no matter how odious’ vibe.

  6. Moderatelywealthy says:

    After George last pictures were not well received – meaning, did not shield W from criticism- they are attempting to rest their image for Xmas- RR has to sell those cuties calenders, right?

  7. Amy Bee says:

    I have no doubt the Cambridges went to Balmoral. We just don’t have photographic proof because the Queen sent a legal letter to the press banning any photos.

    • swirlmamad says:

      You would still think we’d get a photo of them driving up in the car, like we did with Eugenie and her family, though. It all just seems very hush-hush.

      • JT says:

        Or they could’ve posted a picture on their Instagram from the estate and paparazzi would have nothing to do with that. I don’t really believe that they went at all. Besides, do the Keens actually spend much time with the rest of the family? We always hear how close Harry is to the York girls or the queen, and I’ve even heard of him being close to Princess Anne. Who is Will close to in that family?

      • TabithaD says:

        I get the distinct impression that no one in that family likes William too much.

  8. Eurydice says:

    What is a “specially engineered mobile barbecue”? It has wheels? Or maybe a rotor on top so he can helicopter it to wherever he wants a cookout.

    • fluffy_bunny says:

      My grill has wheels and it’s just a webber we bought from a grill store. It’s not mobile because we have a gas line hooked up to it instead of a propane tank.

    • Couch potato says:

      It’s like Mr Collins when he praised lady Catherine the Bourgh’s placement of shelfs in a closet.

  9. Joy says:

    I bet it took an act of Parliament to get Willy up there. We all know he dislikes spending time with his wife.

  10. Lizzie says:

    I’m not convinced the lame bridges went to Scotland. Maybe TOB went alone, reason for lawyers to ban photos.

  11. Julia K says:

    Those hands!! Why does she do this? The splayed fingers up then down, what is she trying to say? More worrisome is why does this bother me.

    • Debbie says:

      I know, right? Whenever I see “the hands” picture it occurs to me that Kate may be recounting to Will how her blazer originally only came with 10 buttons. Well, that was obviously not enough buttons because there were only a total of 6 buttons on both sleeves. So, Will dear, says Kate “I had 4 more buttons sown on the sleeves for a total of 14.” Now it’s perfect.

      I think Will’s face captures his reaction to the blazer story.

  12. Lolo says:

    I don’t believe this story. Anytime they’ve gone before it was this huge deal. Now it’s practically silence. No photos like when Andrew and Eugenie were in their cars.
    Wonder what agreement will and Kate made with the press to keep them out of the papers for the summer.
    I’m sure we’ll get tons of new school pics soon. Earshot is coming up soon too so I’m sure we’ll get on overdose of William saving the world one helicopter ride at a time.
    What ever happened to the Diana statue September thing.
    The fact that every little thing about M&H was leaked while working royals and we know nothing about what will and Kate do is proof of their coordination/protection with the press.

  13. The Duchess says:

    If they were together we would’ve got the annual PR photoshoots of them arriving. I’m not buying it.

  14. Digital Unicorn says:

    Not buying it – everytime they have been there their has been pap shots of them, well of Keen Guevara at the very least. If she can’t get her pap shot in then she ain’t going.

  15. Over it says:

    Okay. So they visited the queen, what do they want a medal for more vacationing?

  16. Harper says:

    Not even an Instagram photo taken by Kate from Balmoral, or a fuzzy photo from afar in their sweaters and wellies? Funny how, despite the supposed ban on photos from Balmoral this year, we’ve still managed to see the Yorks arrive but not the Cambridges. Which family was the no photo edict meant to protect?

    • Shawna says:

      *If* they were actually there, I wouldn’t be surprised if Kate waits to trot out her Balmoral pics until they really need them. (When/why would that be? I dunno. But it does seem like they hang onto things till convenient moments.)

  17. GRUEY says:

    IMHO the silence from the press on these two is much more than just the invisible contract. They are seen as a right wing asset. They are getting the same catch-and-kill favors Trump was getting from Murdoch here in the states.

    Andrew is certainly all mobbed up with the global kleptocrats. They all are, but Andrew is just the most m notorious and stupidly obvious. There is no doubt in my mind that the decision to protect wills goes higher than even the editors and comes from a very dark place.

  18. The Recluse says:

    It’s clear that the priority for the Cambridge children is their relationship with Kate’s mom. The rest is just about making appearances to stay in the Queen’s good books.
    I am beginning to wonder whether Balmoral will end up being mothballed once the Queen or Charles goes. William and Kate don’t seem the least bit interested in Scotland outside of the required cosplay to keep Scotland under control.
    I am hoping that Scotland goes independent more and more.

  19. Carolind says:

    I am Scottish and I very much don’t want independence. William and Kate are certainly not keen on Scottish holidays the way that the Queen and Charles are. Charles spends every New Year in Scotland with Camilla and sometimes her sister and loads of other times as well. Diana hated Balmoral but initially pretended to love it to win over Charles.

    It has been said that Charles is going to gift it to the Scottish National Trust.

    I have no doubt that William and Kate were at Balmoral for about three days – only because it is more or less compulsory. If the Queen said “no photos”, there would not have been any photos. Also, normally the press photograph the Queen and any royals with her every Sunday when she goes to church but, because of covid, she has not been doing that this year.

    I don’t think the Cambridges were anywhere exotic this summer. Not because they didn’t want to or for any finer feelings but they would have been toast if it was discovered.

    George is eight now. There is a slight chance we might hear soon that he won’t be going back to the London school but to a boarding school.

  20. jferber says:

    I wish I were as happy as she pretends to be.

  21. ChattyCath says:

    That’s an awful lot to do in 3 or 4 days.