Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Kate Loves: Bucklebury

Bucklebury is a small sleepy village in West Berkshire, England with a population of 2,066. It may be a mere 45 minute drive from London but with its scenic views, country lanes, oak trees and farmland it could be a world away from the hustle and bustle of city life. In recent years the unremarkable village has come to the attention of the world's media, because the Duchess of Cambridge, formerly Kate Middleton spent a large portion of her life there.

Bucklebury Parish

Bucklebury was a royal manor owned by Edward The Confesser (reigned 1042-1066). The village and parish church are recorded in the Domesday book of 1086 as 'Borgeldeberie' meaning 'Burghild's' (a woman's name) fortified place or borough'. Henry I granted Bucklebury to the Cluniac Reading Abbey, which retained it until it surrendered all lands to the crown in the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1540.

Bucklebury Parish

During the second world war much of Bucklebury Common was cleared for the stationing of troops. Some of the concrete paths laid down are still used to this day as bridleways.

Bucklebury

In 1995, Carole and Michael Middleton's fledgling business Party Pieces had begun to do so well they decided to sell their first married home on Cock Lane for £158,000 and buy a bigger property in the nearby hamlet of Chapel Row for £250,000. The large detached country house with five bedrooms was set in one-and-a-half-acres of land and was called Oak Acre. Discreetly hidden from view by trees, the house can only by accessed via a private road - a security measure that would serve the family in good stead in the years to come.


Kate chose a blue and cream colour scheme for her room and the family decided to have some of the walls knocked to create an open-plan feel. The move was an exciting one for the entire family who immediately fell in love with their nearest village of Bucklebury and the surrounding area - very similar to their previous home - just ten miles away.

Bucklebury Parish

It was a time of change for Kate who moved from St Andrews School (she loved it so much she once said she should like to return to work there as a teacher) to the £22,000 per year all-girls school Downe House. Kate quickly made attempts to make friends and settle into her new school, but encountered a nasty clique of girls who made her time there very unhappy. Former pupil Emma Sayle recalled: "Downe House is a great school but it is a fighting school. She was bullied. It was a huge shock for Kate." After two terms, Mike and Carole moved Kate to Marlborough College where the young teenager was back in her element - making friends and excelling at sports. On weekends, Kate, Pippa and James would play tennis and go for long walks in the countryside.


The family business Party Pieces was operated from converted farm buildings where buyers selected the latest themed tableware, party bags, games and activities. The call centre was based in a 200-year-old barn, the picking room was a converted cow shed, and the huge warehouse (you guessed it) was a converted hay barn stacked with thousands of products ready to be dispatched.


When William and Kate's relationship became public knowledge and media attention began to focus more and more, Bucklebury became a sanctuary for both of them. William forged a strong relationship with the Middleton family, becoming fiercely protective of them and affectionately refers to Mike Middleton as "Dad".

He loved their relaxed family life and spending time at their idyllic country home. Over Carole's Sunday lunches and a glass or two of William's favourite red wine; which Carole always stored in the cellar, the young Prince became a part of the Middleton family.  In 2008, he landed a multi-million pound Chinook helicopter in Kate's back garden for just a number of seconds before taking off again; something he was criticised in the press for doing (though I must say, I thought it was a rather romantic gesture).

Local business owners were thrilled to meet the Prince for the first time. Local shop owner Hash Shingadia, a grocer who attended the royal wedding, recalled the first time William came in he inquired about Wall's Vienetta Mint Ice Cream: "Now we make sure it's always stocked for him." He also confirmed Kate loves Haribo sweets - so much so, he sent her a box as a wedding gift.


Walls Vienetta ice cream has always been a popular treat to take with a bottle of wine to dinner.

Flickr

William and Kate regularly enjoy a quiet drink and a pie at their local The Old Boot Inn. Owner John Haley revealed the couple like to sit at the front of the bar, next to the fireplace. The eighteenth-century building has a contemporary interior and is a quaint pub, where locals can sit back, relax and enjoy a chat.


A number of Bucklebury residents were invited to the royal wedding, though it was a global event watched by people in every corner of the world. William and Kate wanted to see their friends and neighbours sitting in Westminster Abbey. Below we see Kate leaving the Middleton family home in her Audi for the final time before the royal wedding.


Throughout the Cambridges' marriage, they have remained incredibly close to the Middletons and spent quite a lot of time in Bucklebury. On New Year's Eve 2011 the couple were photographed walking the family dogs in the peaceful countryside.

People UK/Princess Diana Remembered

The Duke and Duchess chose to spend last Christmas with the Middletons following Kate's hospitalisation for acute morning sickness. It provided an opportunity for Kate to rest and recuperate whilst enjoying a private family Christmas. They attended the annual service at nearby St Mary's Church where they joined locals in singing traditional carols.


Last year, Carole and Mike Middleton made the decision to move from their five-bedroom 'Oak Acre' to a Georgian house known as 'Bucklebury Manor'. Previously owned by banker Morgan Stanley banker Justin Mason and his wife Jill, there was a bidding war for the much sought after property before the Middletons triumphed paying an estimated £4.7 million.


The Grade II listed house features seven bedrooms, five reception rooms, a swimming pool and a tennis court, all set in eighteen acres of land.

The Steeple Times

The family kitchen.

The Steeple Times

The gardens are simply beautiful.

Jill Mason Garden Design

A lovely place to sit outside and enjoy the scenery.

Jill Mason Garden Design

The day after the Cambridges left St Mary's hospital with their son they travelled to Bucklebury with a four car convoy and have remained their since. It shows how comfortable and at home William and Kate feel there and it's very telling that they want to share those precious first weeks with Kate's family. I'm of the opinion Mike and Carole purchased Bucklebury Manor partly for security and privacy reasons.

McFadden/Mail Online

With 18 acres surrounding the house the family have plenty of room to enjoy country living and outdoor activities away from the public eye. Police protection around the property has been "described as a ring of steel". As William prepares to return to Anglesey to resume work as a search and rescue pilot, Kate is expected to remain in Bucklebury with the support of her family around her.


I have absolutely no doubt whatsoever Prince George will spend much of his childhood playing in the grounds of Bucklebury Manor, walking the family dogs, enjoying Carole's lunches and traditional family events such as Christmas and birthdays.

We often hear Kate has been spotted Antique shopping or stopping at the local shop for curry - but we very, very rarely see photos and moving forward this will most certainly continue. The residents of Bucklebury are hugely protective of Kate and want her to continue enjoying the normalcy she always has. The picturesque village seems a wonderful place to live, and a perfect place for the little prince right now :)

105 comments:

  1. Shantel (@FashionandFaith)6 August 2013 at 22:54

    Oh Charlotte, I love this post! Bucklebury seems like such a beautiful town and, being a huge history buff, I love that the pub is an 18th century building...it is so cool to have so many historic structures around! Imagine the things that building has "witnessed"! Bucklebury, as you describe it, seems exactly how I'd imagine an English town to be....
    I truly hope that you are right and that the people of the town continue to be protective of the family--it would be nice for Prince George to always have a place to go where he can just be a normal kid: i.e run and play without the pop of flashbulbs and the constant stares of curious people.
    Thanks again for yet another awesome post!
    Shantel
    Minnesota, USA

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    1. Thank you so much Shantel :)

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    2. Thx u for zharing this, it sounds like wonderful, peaceful, secluded area to do whatever they want and b press free and live normal life as much as they can have. Its beautiful manor, love to visit area someday, im from USA, so w kids n college, marriages and grandkids around corner think ill b just ckn thru pics lol...
      Lisa
      USA

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  2. Pauline Oak Hills6 August 2013 at 23:13

    Another great post Charlotte.
    I think William now can go back to work and know that Kate & his son is well protected. It really had to be hard for him to leave Kate & the baby. But it will not be long before he is done with the RAF and will be home full time with his beloved Kate and baby boy George.

    Bucklebury look's like a great place to rasie a child. To bad William & Kate can not purchase a home there or keep the one they are living in Anglesey. Both places give them the privacy they want.

    Again a great post. You are the best.

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    1. They will have plenty of privacy and protections at their country home on Sandringham Estate. The public cannot get to them their. It is where they will be the safest. I have seen here a couple of people like me say they want to visit Bucklebury, and I think it is not a good thing for the town that so many people know about it now. I had never heard of it before. I hope the people of the town will guard it, but the cannot keep others from driving through, stopping at the pub, the grocery store, etc. It will change. These things always do.

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  3. Yours has quickly become on of my favorite blogs and I look forward to your posts immensely. You have such a great way of making us feel included in Kate's life without it feeling like I am reading an intrusive tabloid. So respectful and charming! I really hope the Prince gets a shot at a 'normal' family upbringing by spending time at the Middleton's estate. I have followed along since I was 5, being woken up by my mother at dawn to watch Diana marry Prince Charles. This American has learned so much and I can't wait to visit the UK one day! (although my lucky teen was fortunate enough to visit this summer but her interests lie in Dr.Who...)
    Cheers!
    Jessica, Bay Area, California

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    1. Melanie from California7 August 2013 at 18:07

      Hi, Jessica,
      I live in the Sacramento area; it is neat that we live so close to each other! I enjoy reading everyone's comments from around the country and around the world, so it is always extra fun when I see a comment from a 'local.' I am so glad your daughter had the opportunity to travel overseas. She will hold those memories dear throughout her life. I traveled a few years ago on a college trip, and I remember it like it was yesterday! My favorite place in the UK is the Lake District and Windermere, home of Beatrix Potter. I was pleased to learn that Kate enjoys Windermere, too. I stayed at a lovely hotel in Ambleside, darling village, much like Bucklebury. I encourage you to visit the English countryside in addition to London. After 2 weeks in the country, the visit to London was a few days at the end of the trip. It was beautiful, but a culture shock after the quiet of the country. If you want to squeeze city life and country life into one trip, I would visit London first with its hustle and bustle and busy-ness, and then spend the remainder of your trip exploring the countryside.
      Cheers!
      Melanie

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  4. Bucklebury looks like a wonderful place to live. I really enjoyed this post. Thank you so much.

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  5. This answered many of my questions, I loved to learn more about the village and Kate's life there. You're doing a great job, I must say :-) It isn't easy to get all the important information and put them all together into such a nice brief article among with the photos. Hats off to you!

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  6. Hello Charlotte and DK Community,
    Thank you for the post. Bucklebury sounds like an idyllic place to live! I hope to visit there one day.
    Although Kate may love it there and enjoy the support of her family, I think she will return to Anglesey with William. I think Kate understands that she is married now with a family of her own. Most likely She will have the support of her housekeeper and her mother is just a phone call away. Im sure Carol taught her many things during her visit and prepared her well. I just don't believe Kate would keep her son away from his father. They are a family, how could they stand being apart from one another?

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  7. Cindy from Toronto7 August 2013 at 00:57

    What a treat to get home this evening and have a new post to read. With my cup of tea by my side I thoroughly enjoyed reading this informative and well written piece. Thank you Charlotte!

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  8. Jane from New England7 August 2013 at 01:07

    What a wonderful post! And such interesting history. I hope that tourists won't begin flocking there. I know I would want to! But I would not if I knew William and Catherine were there. Of course there will be lots of secluded places for the young prince at all the royal palaces, too. But I agree, his Middleton grandparents are going to be very special to him. They are all very blessed and our prayers are with them.

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  9. Sarah from Calif.7 August 2013 at 01:08

    Charlotte., this was an absolute delight to come home too after my first day back at work, after summer break. Bucklebury sounds very charming and I am so glad William, Kate and George have a nice quiet place to get away to, to be with the family. I love all of the trees and bushes everywhere. I too hope the respect the community (by giving them their privacy) continues.

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    1. Thank you all so much for your comments. I'm so happy you enjoyed it. I think we can all relate to wanting to be close to our families, I know my own families support has been invaluable to my fiancé and I and we absolutely love spending time with them. It's wonderful for William and Kate to have somewhere they can pop into the local shop or go out for a drink and just be treated like the other locals and I think it will prove even more important for them as George (and possible future siblings) grow up. It's a beautiful place, I'm not surprised they love it so much.

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  10. Bucklebury looks like a perfect tourist town for starting a family!!No surprise her family bought a Manor there. The house looks cozy and inviting although the current decor must be much more classy. The story of Kate being bullied seems like sweet revenge---she will be the Queen one day over the very girls that bullied her.
    Love the picture of Kate driving in the Audi. Wonder if she is wearing a white coat or a sweater?Thanks chica for this update!!xoxo

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    1. Hello, Kate was wearing a pink sweater :)

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    2. Thank You so much Charlotte for all the hard work you put into your blog for your loyal fans!!!xoxo

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    3. Kate, Texas, USA7 August 2013 at 05:44

      Siddhii, when I hear of Kate being bullied and the ugliness she faced from others at Downe House, part of me feels sadness, but another part slyly giggles. Who's getting the last laugh now? I'm sure those ugly girls never imagined Kate as their future queen!

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  11. I wish I could like all these comments as I agree with so many of them and can't really repeat already well thought out responses... So thank you for posting this and ditto most of the above!

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    1. Theresa, from Paris7 August 2013 at 13:34

      Ditto to Sarah Nelson's comment ;-))

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    2. Shantel (@FashionandFaith)7 August 2013 at 15:32

      Sarah,
      I have thought the same thing so many times before! LOL! :)
      Shantel
      Minnesota, USA

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  12. Great post. Dear Charlotte did you hear that Princess Charlotte of Monaco is pregnant? Perhaps you can do a post on that beautiful royal? Cheers

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    1. Hello Mellie,

      I did see photos of Charlotte, she looks radiant and I've always admired her style. If I ever have time to write my other royal blog again, I will most certainly include many posts on Charlotte Casiraghi.

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  13. I checked this blog at least 10 times today waiting for the new post! All I can say is that I wasn't disappointed!!

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  14. So cool to see a photo of their kitchen... I can just imagine them all in there with the baby :)

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  15. Kate, Texas, USA7 August 2013 at 05:41

    Oh Charlotte, I loved this post! Bucklebury sounds like an idyllic place to live and raise a family! It is absolutely beautiful and such a wonderful history! I love history and am always fascinated by the rich history SO much of England has to offer. I will say village life is so different than the hustle and bustle of London. London is fabulous, but the peace and serenity of a village is like no other. Hoping to one day stop off in Bucklebury on one of my England trips and enjoy a shepherd's pie at The Old Boot Inn!

    I think it's absolutely wonderful that Kate has such a strong relationship with her family and that William fits right in. That is something Diana never had, but longed for. I think it gives William the sense of normalcy in his fishbowl life. A time that he can just be William and not Prince William of Wales future king of England. I'm glad William and Kate have had the opportunity to spend the first couple weeks with her family in Bucklebury. It's quiet, peaceful, and I'm positive there will be no paps hanging around their private property with the mass of security. Prince George will love it as he grows older and will have many wonderful memories at Grandpa and Grandma Middleton's home. Those 18 acres will be well trod!

    I think you are probably right that Bucklebury Manor was purchased for security and privacy measures. From what I always understood about Oak Acre, was that it sat close to the road and could be easily seen. Apparently there were even bus tours driving by right before the wedding. Crazy. Charlotte, do you know if they sold Oak Acre or what's happened with that?

    Just a tidbit of information.... Last summer on my trip to England, I got to stop off in the quaint village of Marlborough. A friend and I had afternoon tea and did a little shopping on High Street. It was lovely! I imagined Kate being a student there and heading to the local coffee shop or Waitrose. We stopped by Marlborough College and it was beautiful. It sits right on Bath Rd. in west Marlborough. The school seemed so quiet and serene. It looked like a wonderful place to attend school and make memories. I took a few pictures and we went on our way to Stonehenge, but was so glad to see where Kate spent many of her school days!

    Charlotte, thank you so much for another wonderful post!

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    1. Kate,

      It sounds like your trip was idyllic. It seems Kate was incredibly happy at Marlborough and she really bounced back after a difficult time at Downe House.

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    2. Melanie from California9 August 2013 at 22:08

      Kate, thank you for sharing your story. That must have been so special to stand where our other Kate trod! Thank you for sharing your photos from the church service. I really enjoyed seeing them.

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  16. Kate, Texas, USA7 August 2013 at 05:46

    Forgot to add that the Vienetta mint ice cream looks SO yummy! Wills has good taste in dessert! :-)

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    1. OMG, Kate, I thought the same you did! The ice cream looks very tasty!

      Ana B. from Brazil

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    2. Melanie from California9 August 2013 at 22:07

      Yes, that ice cream looks delicious! My favorite flavor of ice cream is mint chocolate chip. So pleased to learn William likes something similar!

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    3. Shantel (@FashionandFaith)12 August 2013 at 18:58

      Melanie and Kate,
      Remember when Bryers had the Vienetta ice cream for a while? It looked a lot like the ice cream featured here and was DELICIOUS!!! I wonder why they stopped making it...? *sigh*
      Shantel
      Minnesota, USA

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  17. After reading this article for the 3rd time, something is bothering me. Everyone is saying how normal and down to Earth the Middletons are yet they have an estimated worth,of what, 40 million dollars or so. Yes they are normal compared to Royalty but to the everyday person it is hard to compare. Don't get me wrong, I love the fact that Carol and Michal Middleton are self made millionaires. But they are rich, way richer then the majority of us are and Prince Georgie is never going to come close to being like the middleclass no matter what 'normalcy' the Middletons bring.

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    1. Emily, I think most people are referring to the fact that they are a close, loving family. Their values and the way they interact wouldn't be impacted by their bank account. IMO.

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    2. I totally agree, Emily. The Middleton's "normalcy" is exaggerated in the press. We're repeatedly reminded of how normal/middle-class/down-to-earth Kate and her family are, and the main evidence for such is that her parents didn't come from money and that they weren't born into the royal family.

      Remember all the fuss about Prince William marrying a commoner around the time of their wedding. Very silly, considering the number of times it has been pointed out on this blog (and elsewhere)that Harry is a commoner, as well.

      Of course, Kate and her family could be down-to-earth and "normal," but being a self-made millionaire and not being a blood royal don't necessarily make one so.

      All of that to say, the Middleton are loaded and have been for much of Kate's life. Just look at the schools she attended, the clothes she wore before the engagement, the car she drove, etc.

      More power to the Middleton's for making their own way (a trait admired by many an American), but let's not kid ourselves by buying into the "they're-so-average-and-normal" bit. Prince George has two VERY privileged sets of grandparents.

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    3. Hi, JL!
      I'm a little confused... What did you mean by saying Harry is commoner?
      I'm sorry, but I really didn't get it!
      Hugs,

      Ana B. from Brazil

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    4. Sarah from Calif.9 August 2013 at 01:11

      I guess the question is "what is normal" ?
      They do have loads of money, that they have worked for, which many of us have worked hard too but fortune hasn't been our lot in life. I think what many people appreicate is the life style. Family first. A close knit family too, very Endearing!

      Being bullied in school, I wonder why Kate was? Was she not from a Posh enough family for those around her. Girls can be very mean. Well she knows how to choose high end clothes and choose less exspensive pieces that some who are very wealthy wouldn't even touch.
      A great challenge raising George with all the privileges. The thing that bothers me is Kate can't even take him out for a stroll without the endless preassure of cameras. No really that bothers me. A little stroll window shopping..........

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    5. Pauline Oak Hills9 August 2013 at 04:18

      @Emily & JL- I have been reading your comments and what I am understanding that you both are putting down (I will use that word) the Middleton family for working their butts off to make a good living to give their children a good life. And I believe amount of money Emily stated that the Middletons are worth is incorrect. I can not believe what the papers write about someone's networth unless their financial records have been made public. And I don't believe the Middletons have ever made that personal information public. There is no reason for them to do so. Unlike the Queen and other royal memebers they do post their tax returns for the public to see.

      Just becasue a family has money does not mean they are not down to earth fun loving people. I think you are giving the Middletons a bad rap. Now this is just what I am taking from reading both of your comments. So please in a nce way if I am wrong please let me know.

      @Royalfan- I totally agree with you.

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    6. Pauline I think you misundersood what they were trying to say. I read it as saying the Middletons are what in America are known as upper middle class not middle class. They did not say the family was not loving and fun but rather they led what to many of the readers is a privledged lifestyle. This life style is not the norm and they feel the media portrays them as middle class rather than upper middle class.
      I read it as they are in a higher class and said nothing abou the family dynamics which appear close and loving.
      From a financial standpoint the value of their house, the amount they paid for an appartment in the city for the kids, the school costs, and the fact they paid for part of the wedding indicated they are from an upper income level like in the 1% category

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    7. Thanks, Anonymous 20:14! You restated very well what we're getting at, I think. I feel mostly curiosity at how the Middleton family is portrayed by the media as being very average in terms of social and economic status. I think it's inaccurate to believe the Middleton's are going to provide a "normal life" for Prince George, if "normal" implies anything close to what an average income affords. But, as Sarah from Calif. pointed out, "normal" is relative. Prince George's upbringing, if influenced heavily by the Middleton's, will probably be quite similar to Kate's and thus will be "normal" by their standards. : )

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    8. Beatrix in New York13 August 2013 at 16:34

      I absolutely understand Emily, JL and Anon 20:14.
      To quote JL, "The Middleton's "normalcy" is exaggerated in the press."

      I'm not quite sure if this is done to bring some "sympathy" to the royals (now family to commoners) or by some outlets in a mean way to actually put-down the Middletons and somehow "remind them of their place!"
      Per Wikipedia: In England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland, the "upper class" traditionally comprised the landed gentry and the aristocracy of noble families with hereditary titles.
      So I guess most outlets stick to a more traditional definition of upper class. Plus, William (free of protocol and so many rules) must surely find them "normal" :p although he should just know, he will never KNOW normal :p

      Like Anon 20:14 said, they are clearly from and upper income level, and I really don't think they have a "normal" life. The biggest indicator could be the career decisions of their children after college. A less privileged "normal" person would go to a full-time job and more things would fall on personal attainment (in my mind) vs your parents purchasing a flat for you or assisting with a financial investment for you to start a business, or simply being able to comfortably enjoy your 20s free of financial concerns.
      My commoner and middle-class self finds it somewhat NORMAL for the children of a privileged family to have a great, if not the country's BEST, education available to them. Then later go and increase the family wealth by a tenfold. And I guess this where the Middleton "children" surprise me. Throw rocks at me, but I find it sad that they don't have enviable and truly successful careers (having so much made available to them), but then again, they aren't that normal and perhaps are happy with the wealth the parents have already obtained.

      The Middletons seem like a smart, tight and loving family and that is great. My husband has been very welcomed into my family (especially my immediate family) and he too likes to vacation with them too. So to outsiders it might seem a bit odd and crazy, but to have that tight, relaxed and loving bond with the in-laws is just lovely, and I also think it will be extremely nice for the children.

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  18. Marion from Germany7 August 2013 at 07:00

    Dear Charlotte,

    another one of my favourite „Kate loves …“ – posts, wonderful work, thank you for it!

    I spent my summer holiday (almost two weeks ago) with my family and friends of ours in Wales, so on our way back to Dover we drove on the motorway which runs quite close to Bucklebury. For a moment I thought about making a detour to that beautiful village – the idea was so tempting, especially as the whole Cambridge family was there at that time! But then I had second thoughts about it and decided to stay on the motorway and not visit Bucklebury, as I do not want to be one of those people who ruin Kate’s and William’s privacy and get on the nerves of all those people who live there. I am still a bit proud of myself for being so steadfast and have regrets at the same time. ;-)

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    1. I hope you had a wonderful time in Wales, I just love it there and what a very thoughtful decision regarding Bucklebury. I think the majority of William and Kate's fans are really very respectful towards them.

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    2. Sarah from Calif.9 August 2013 at 01:15

      Marion from Germany, my complements to you for allowing them their space. Well done. :)

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  19. I agree, Sarah! :o)

    Another thoughtful, informative post. Thank you, Charlotte, for all you do!

    I think it's so wonderful that the Cambridges have a beautiful, safe, bucolic place to stay with family and be themselves. It's lovely to think of the people of Bucklebury protecting the family as well. I have no doubt that Anmer Hall will be another safe, favorite place for William & Catherine, and hope that you do a "Kate loves" article about it after the Duke & Duchess move there.

    Julie

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  20. Thank you so much for all the work you make !
    I would really really like to go in Bucklebury, i hope one day to discover this beautiful area : spring perhaps or summer
    This blog is my best about Kate :-)
    Stephanie from France

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  21. Robin Indiana USA
    Wonderful post Charlotte with a bit of history I love. Bucklebury sounds like a tiny bit of heaven. No wonder why The Middletons fell in love with the area to raise their family. Now Kate has a wonderful place to bring George to visit his grandparents. I can see how William fell in love with Kate in these beautiful surrounding along with her family's support. Just what the Dr. ordered to help William love and heal after losing his Mom.

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  22. I rarely comment on your posts, though I check the blog daily without fail. :) I am a huge fan of Kate, a common interest we all share :)
    I enjoy reading all the posts, but this one was such a super smash hit, I simply had to tell you how incredibly amazing it is. :)
    Charlotte, you're awesome! Make me speechless! :)

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    1. Many, many thanks. We've had a lot of news/fashion style posts lately and I like to make sure there's something for everyone to read here and I've found these type of posts are quite popular. We have so many different areas to cover this year in terms of 'Kate Loves' posts this year, I have a notebook on my desk with over 30 ideas and suggestions from all of you.

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    2. I really do love the Kate Loves posts, they are thoroughly entertaining! :)
      It was fantastic to see the inside of Kate's Buckleberry home, it looks so cozy! Are those really pictures of Kate's home? Can we see more pictures? I would love to :) It's unbelievable that we can see that home from the inside! :)
      Thanks again Charlotte for an amazingly superb post :) :) You're undoubtedly the best! :)

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  23. I loved this post, so many details I didn't know about :) Bucklebury seems to be a peaceful place. I don't think it would work for me, I'm a very urban girl :) , but it must be the ideal place for the new family right now.

    I sometimes wonder if Kate doesn't get bored spending so much time in the country (and this also puzzled me when she lived in Anglesey). I'm sure Pippa and James have to work, and they're probably in London most of the time. I'm sure her father Mike is out for work too. So it must be a little tedious spending so much time around the house, just with mom Carole (when William returns to work). Of course, now she has the baby to take care of, but still. Even a young mother needs to hangout with a friend or some kind of distraction, it's healthy!

    Anyway, Charlotte, may I ask what happened to Oak Acre? Did the family sell it, or are they keeping it?

    Hugs!
    Z. from Portugal

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    1. I will check that out regarding Oak Acre. I imagine it was sold but haven't read anything concrete.

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  24. I have been coming here for the real heart touching information. Charlotte, you really do seem to care very much about the Cambridge's, your readers and are so loyal to both. I do hope one day you will be able to meet them, so they can thank you for always showing respect, admiration and only reporting the truth, the good things. I live just outside of Los Angeles and it really is a Zoo full of people! A full on people zoo that when they get out of their cages they chase others around in an invasive predatory way.

    I must admit it is very hard waiting to see the sweet little family again, but coming here is a reminder why it's ok that time passes. They are in a loving environment where deep bonds are set. This post really does satisfy that need for new information in a very touching way.

    Has the Duke already returned to work? You mentioned in a previous post that there would be a small photo call prior to his return, have you received any updates?

    Thank you so much for being on the good side of journalism and not the ugly one. Thank you for providing such a warm place for all of the true caring Cambridge fans. You Charlotte are amazing! If you are ever across the pond in CA I too would like to shake your hand and thank you for obviously being a wonderful individual.

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    1. Hello Marina,

      I believe William is back to work today. The photos would have been already taken by a photographer chosen by Kensington Palace. It's just a matter of time before they release them, I'm hearing it could very well be some time next week. I'm very excited to see the official photo :)

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  25. I agree! What a nice post. I'm so glad I found this blog. You do a lovely job Charlotte. It is nice to see a peak without invading their privacy.

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  26. I was really looking forward to the next post of Kate Loves - and I am not disappointed. I really enjoyed reading about Bucklebury and it looks like such a lovely yet quaint place to live or much better to grow up =) I'm sure the little Prince will enjoy many a good time there. I was also curious to know what Bucklebury Manor looked like on the inside, I was delighted to see the two pictures. It looks so comfy and homey - I'm sure the Middletons and William and Kate really enjoy being there. Thanks for all the good work your put into this blog Charlotte!

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  27. Theresa from Austin, Texas USA7 August 2013 at 14:57

    Thank you so much for this wonderful post. I love how you make all the information you provide so personal and so informative. This American girl has learned so much about the UK from this fabulous blog!

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    Replies
    1. So many wonderful comments, thank you all so much. The 'Kate Loves' posts are perfect for quiet times in William and Kate's schedule and so much fun to research and write.

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  28. Hello! I am new here and wanted to express my delight that found your blog. This post and all other are very interesting. I am looking forward to the next post! Thank you.

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  29. Kkushy in sunny South Africa7 August 2013 at 17:52

    Then cheers to a great researcher n wonderful writer!!!charlotte, u always get me interested in whatever topic u put up! Thank u!!! Hugs n beeeeg love from Kushy

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  30. Does anyone know what a Grade II listed house means?
    Colorado Eve

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    Replies
    1. Listing of property in the UK protects it from insensitive development. Grade 1 is the highest listing and Grade 2 less important. It does mean you cannot do anything to the property without approval from the local council so it can mean changes are slow and costly. It can attract buyers to property but can also be a hindrance!

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    2. Thanks, Karen UK.
      Colorado Eve

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  31. Charlotte, thanks for another informative, eye-catching post. Great photos. I was struck by Bucklebury's 1000 year-old history. There's a saying that "In the US, 100 miles is a short distance. In the UK, 100 years is a short time." Bucklebury must have a very special feeling about it, a village with an old soul. It's an English storybook sort of place to grow up, and I am sure Prince George will take lots of happy memories from his time there. Looking forward to seeing the photos from KP.

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  32. I am very lucky to live close to Bucklebury and it is just as it sounds. The larger house next door to Middleton's is Bucklebury House owned by the family who run Bucklebury Farm Park and deer park. Grandchildren of Middletons will be very lucky to be able to walk across the road and visit as they grow up. My kids have loved it as have I!

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  33. Well, I guess I'm little late but I must say this post is my absolute favourite regarding the Kate Loves series!
    Charlotte you've excelled yourself at this! Impressive post!
    Lots of new information! THANK YOU! Loved the pictures of the kitchen and living room... Very cosy!
    Bucklebury must be a beautiful place but, like Z. from Portugal said, I'm a convicted urban girl ;)
    While I know and agree that the place should not be invaded by tourists, I can't lie and say I wouldn't love to visit the place someday! Because I surely would!
    Hugs,

    Ana B. from Brazil

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  34. Melanie from California8 August 2013 at 04:29

    I just discovered an article about a William-Kate-Prince George sculpture out of sand in Brighton: http://www.express.co.uk/news/weird/420403/Sculptors-imortalise-Prince-William-Duchess-of-Cambridge-and-Prince-George-in-sand

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  35. Oh charlotte i love your post so divine i love all the list on kate loves i been away for long time well i finished my girlfriend duties that my man loves it once while and her sister wedding so beautiful nature and enviorment after the wedding my man puropse to me it was so special and ideal because are family and friends are there and good i did realized he poped the question and said yes it was wonderful moment for us i think prince george like there.. and her mother princess there imagined prince george playing in the garden and mom kate and dad william looking around with uncle harry james and aunt pippa together grandma carole and grandpa micheal

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    Replies
    1. Congratulations and best wishes, Bluefire!
      Colorado Eve

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    2. Bluefire, congratulations!
      That's great news!
      Hugs,

      Ana B. from Brazil

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    3. Congratulations Bluefire on your engagement!

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    4. Sarah from Calif.9 August 2013 at 01:18

      Bluefire, how exciting! Congratulations! I do love weddings.

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    5. Best wishes to you, Bluefire, from Marci in Salt Lake City.

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    6. Jean from Lancs.9 August 2013 at 21:52

      How exciting Bluefire; congratulations---look forward to hearing of the wedding.

      Delete
    7. Shantel (@FashionandFaith)12 August 2013 at 18:55

      Bluefure,
      Congratulations! Wishing you and your fiance all the best!
      Shantel
      Minnesota, USA

      Delete
  36. 'Kate loves' posts turned out to be a great success :)
    I am looking forward to seeing the next post :)
    Hats off to you Charlotte !

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  37. Melanie from California8 August 2013 at 18:20

    Hi, Charlotte,
    I thought it might interest you to know I uncovered more history about Bucklebury while reading about the commemorative Prince George mug offered for sale. (Thanks for your link to the website for Bucklebury Parish).

    http://www.buckleburyparish.org/news/93-commemorative-mugs
    Deliveries for the mugs are anticipated in early autumn. As well as the Royal baby's name and date of birth, the design depicts a wreath of acorns, highlighting the Avenue of Oaks, a famous landmark in the village associated with an earlier Royal visit to the parish by Queen Elizabeth I.

    When I read this, I thought of Kate's beautiful earrings she wore on her wedding day. How special that those oak trees have stood for hundreds of years! They have seen Elizabeth the First and Duchess Kate.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's fascinating Melanie, Bucklebury has such an interesting history.

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    2. Kate, Texas, USA8 August 2013 at 21:16

      I remembered reading around the time of the royal wedding that the current Queen had visited Bucklebury, so I googled it again. Queen Elizabeth II visited in 1972 and planted more oak trees with the existing ones and then Princess Anne also planted trees in Bucklebury to commemorate the 80th birthday of the Queen Mother. It would be nice for the Queen to visit again at some point. Maybe some oaks will be planted to celebrate the birth of Prince George. Bucklebury really does have an interesting history, as do so many English villages. :-)

      Melanie, I'm interested in the commemorative mug. Thanks for sharing!

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    3. Melanie from California9 August 2013 at 22:03

      You're welcome, Kate. I like the idea of more oak trees being planted to commemorate George's birth. He can grow up watching the trees grow, too :)

      Delete
  38. The other day I shared the link of the Middleton's garden http://www.jillmansongardendesign.co.uk/project.php?id=5
    Must be wonderful to sit in that place in a summer afternoon.
    Charlotte - can you put the photos on the page?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, I will add them now :)

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    2. Thankyou :)

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    3. Melanie from California9 August 2013 at 22:14

      Thank you for sharing these photos! Such a nice surprise to take a peek at the beautiful garden!

      Delete
  39. Kate, Texas, USA8 August 2013 at 21:02

    Oh the gardens are absolutely divine! Thanks for adding the pictures Charlotte! What I would give to enjoy a cup of tea and book looking out at the parkland. So very beautiful! :-)

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  40. Charlotte, thank you for adding photos of the gardens!
    Simply stunning! One of the prettiest I've ever seen!

    Ana B. from Brazil

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  41. Sarah from Calif.9 August 2013 at 01:24

    Love the gardens! Beautiful. If anyone knows how to send rain only on my grass and plants, please let me know.
    By the way Hi Charlotte hope you have had a good day!

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    Replies
    1. Hello Sarah! I'm very good thank you, looking forward to writing a post tonight and spending the weekend with family. I hope you all have a lovely, relaxing weekend!

      Delete
  42. Im looking forward for the official photo of the prince william and his princess catherine i love no matter how to called her is a princess by marrying prince william in april 29 2011 and dont know why many people have ask the buckingham palace when prince william listed the our duchess catherine a princess i dont see any wrong doing that and yes i know that a part of duchess life is here buckleberry i think prince william love there private life and there enjoyinng private time with prince george

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  43. Dear Charlotte,
    You mentioned you had another royal blog could you please post a link to it as I would love to read it!

    Secondly did you buy any dresses from the banana republic Issa collection today? I bought the similar blue wrap dress she wore at her engagement announcement and the printed wrap dress which was seen on Naomi watts a few days ago that dress is actually my favorite so pretty with multi coloured red print against a white dress. Is it true that Kate won't buy Issa anymore due to Camilla al Fayed owning the brand now?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Mellie,

      I did indeed, in the Merlot colourway. The site actually mislabelled the 'Royal Blue' dress 'Turquoise' but it is in fact royal blue. It's an incredibly popular collection but no, I honestly don't think we will ever see Kate wear Issa again. She's incredibly careful to send out the right messages with her clothing and because of the Al Fayed connection, I cannot see Kate publicly wearing them again. Nonetheless, Kate's engagement dress is such an iconic piece and no doubt very special to Kate.

      Let me know what you think of your dresses when they arrive :)

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    2. As for my other blog. 'The Royal Digest', I'm afraid I couldn't find the time to write in the manner I wanted and if I had it would have led to neglecting this blog, so I decided to leave it for the time being (If only there were a few more hours in the day). Here's the link http://theroyaldigest.blogspot.com

      Delete
    3. Thanks for the blog link and for letting me know the dress is royal blue instead of Turquoise I am happy about that since I ordered it. Will let you know congrats on the Merlot colourway that is a beautiful dress. I agree with everything you said regarding Kate wearing Issa. Have a beautiful day.

      Delete
  44. Pauline Oak Hills9 August 2013 at 04:22

    Ms. Charlotte- I just read where the Baby Cambridge Fund Raiser hit it's goal of over $5,000. Congrats to the all the ladies who were in charge of this great fund raiser. The funds are going to help alot of children. And I hope the Duchess is told of how these funds came from her many fans across this big world. i am that I was able to be aprat of this.

    GREAT JOB LADIES!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! We are absolutely delighted. There are still some activities to come but I must say we are thrilled for EACH.

      Delete
  45. Marci in Salt Lake City9 August 2013 at 06:55

    This is a wonderful post, Charlotte. I love the villages I have been able to visit, and it is lovely to read about this one. But I do think I would drive past instead of contributing to ruining the peace. I'm sure the future will bring coaches full of tourists, alas! Still, let us hope not.

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  46. Congratulations Baby Cambridge Fundraiser! :)

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  47. Patrice in Huntsville, Alabama9 August 2013 at 15:16

    As an American who cannot get enough of the royals - any of them! - I loveeeee the information and pictures you post - it's things we don't have privy to here and I love all the info - so thankful I found this website as I feel like for the first time I have a real link to the Royal family!!!!!!

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  48. Jean from Lancs.9 August 2013 at 21:49

    Beautiful gardens --lovely house all together. I suspect the internal photos were from the time the house was for sale, so it is probably much different now--at least in the furnishings and colour schemes.
    Lovely that the target for the EACH fund has been reached. Thank you for all the hard work Charlotte.

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  49. A shame they are not current pics of the interior, I was hoping to see carole baking at the aga!! Joan Boston USA

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  50. Beatrix in New York13 August 2013 at 16:04

    Wow, "population of 2,066. It may be a mere 45 minute drive from London..." :O
    I had no idea it was so close to London (I drove more to college :p) and that it had such a small population. Must be nice.

    I have a dumb observation: The "new" Middleton house looks so similar to their previous house (at least the outside, I know it varies in size, etc.). It has me wondering, are mostly all homes alike? I don't see any color, just brick.
    If you are from the USA you might understand me. We have a bit more of a variety (brownstone, brick, paneling, brick + paneling), and homes are sooo completely different, especially varying from region to region, i.e. homes in California, Arizona, Texas, Illinois, New York.
    I have also visited a lovely town in Mexico (Guanajuato) and they have really bright cement homes there. I took several pictures from a mountain, where you could appreciate the view better: a million different bright boxes on the green mountains. It was quite impressive. I even went around just taking pictures of homes (they are even more different and unique to homes in the USA, and that isn't reserved to a certain income bracket) to make a collage :p A recent visitor, from Mexico, mentioned all of the houses are the same here in the US (plus, they can't wrap their head around a WOOD house).

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  51. Hello there! I must tell you the blog post is really good. It is very informative. Bucklebury is just an awesome place.I loved it.
    thank you for this post.

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  52. Oh, Memories, for instance the photo of the little walk bridge over the water where I used to paddle as a small boy, these photos all brought back many childhood memories for me. You see, I too was born in Bucklebury 'in the Slade' for those that know the area I was born in the [at that time] the only thatch cottage in the area which was owned by my grandparents 'the Johnsons'. Who would ever guess that my little village would become so well known worldwide, this has blown my chance [ever now] of being able to return there and buy that little thatch cottage, maybe like Kate I too can re-visit the little shop where we both used to buy our sweets and/or icecreams. Derek Morrison previously known as Derek Johnson now in Australia ctensw@gmail.com

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