It should have been an occasion for friends – and family – to celebrate. But, in another example of what appears to be the increasingly frosty relationship between the Duchesses of Cambridge and Sussex, I can reveal that Prince Harry and Meghan were absent from Kate’s intimate birthday party last weekend.
Kate celebrated her 37th birthday with a Sunday lunch with William and close friends at Anmer Hall, their Norfolk country home near Sandringham.
Kate (left) celebrated her 37th birthday with a Sunday lunch with William and close friends at Anmer Hall. Right: Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex
Though Anmer has ten bedrooms – plenty of room for guests – Harry and Meghan did not attend.
Over the years, some Royal observers have waspishly suggested that Kate lacks any real female friends.But she has several close allies who have remained remarkably loyal over the years – and a handful of them were at last week’s party.
Sophie Carter attends the wedding of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews at St Mark's Church
One was Emilia Jardine-Paterson, who played hockey with Kate at Marlborough College, and is a godmother to Prince George. When Kate and William went through their brief split in 2007, Emilia took Kate on a girlie break to Ibiza. A discreet interior designer, Emilia reportedly helped the Royals redecorate Anmer Hall and Kensington Palace.
Her husband David, who was also at the party, was at Eton with William. Another old friend at the lunch was Laura Meade, godmother of Princess Charlotte and a Norfolk neighbour. Laura was another who helped Kate through the split with William and is now one of her closest confidantes. Laura’s husband James accompanied her.
The other couple who joined Kate and William were Sophie Carter, another Norfolk chum, and her husband Robert.
The pals she did invite: Emilia Jardine-Paterson (left) and Laura Meade (right)
When Sophie married Robert last September, Charlotte and Prince George were pages.
Sophie has known Kate for many years, and they celebrated the Duchess’s 31st in Paris.
Let’s hope Meghan and Harry at least sent Kate a card!