Wild cheating claims started to spread this month after several UK tabloids reported rumors about a rivalry between Kate Middleton and Rose Hanbury, the Marchioness of Cholmondeley, who is an ex-model married to film director David Rocksavage, the Marquess of Cholmondeley.
Rose and her husband are neighbors and friends to Kate Middleton and Prince William. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s country home, Anmer Hall, in Sandringham, Norfolk, England, is close to Houghton Hall where Rose Hanbury and her husband David live.
(In the British peer system a marchioness is the wife or the widow of a marquess, a nobleman who ranks below a duke but above an earl.)
British tabloid reports began referring to Rose as Kate’s “rural rival” following rumors about a feud between them and alleged efforts by Prince William to play “peacemaker” between the women. Although the alleged feud was widely reported it was never confirmed that Kate and Rose were actually feuding or what the alleged feud was about.
However, the tabloid reports went on to claim that Kate demanded that William exclude Rose from their social circle. Most of the tabloid stories only indirectly referenced rumors that William might have cheated on Kate with Rose when Kate was pregnant with their third child.
A U.S.-based website then published a report based on the rumors, claiming that when Kate got wind of William’s alleged affair with Rose, she confronted him about it, but he “laughed it off, saying there was nothing to it.”
Kate was reportedly upset when the rumors gained traction.
Prince William cheating on Duchess Kate with a model friend as his father did on his late mother Princess Diana proves that no amount of money nor royalty will make a man loyal if he doesn’t care for it.
— ? Iris ? (@irisvicencio) April 25, 2019
However, the stories that Prince William might have cheated on Kate with Rose were based entirely on rumors and none of the publications ever provided evidence to back up the claims.
The royal family was also reportedly upset about the rumors because it involved cheating allegations. The U.S.-based Daily Beast recently reported that the royal family took the unusual step of taking legal action to curb the rumors.
According to the Daily Beast, the royal family brought pressure to bear on The Times of London’s staff writer Giles Coren to take down a tweet in which he appeared to confirm that cheating rumors.
“Yes, it is an affair. I haven’t read the piece but I know about the affair. Everyone knows about the affair, darling,” the tweet reportedly read.
The Daily Beast also reports that an attorney of the royal family served legal warnings to at least one British publication which published details of the rumors. Part of the letter reads:
In addition to being false and highly damaging, the publication of false speculation in respect of our clients’ private life also constitutes a breach of his privacy pursuant to Article 8 of the European Convention to Human Rights.
This is not the first time that Prince William and Kate Middleton have taken legal action against publications. In 2017, they sued La Provence, a French publication, for publishing topless photos of Kate. They were awarded $115,000.