William Once Reportedly Ditched Kate Middleton On Valentine's Day For Rose Hanbury

Even if you're not usually tuned into royal news, you're probably familiar with Rose Hanbury, the Marchioness of Cholmondeley. When Kate Middleton began recovery from her abdominal health crisis, which she later revealed to be cancer, the public's curiosity about her absence sparked rumors, once again, of a potential affair. With scarce information from Kensington Palace regarding the Princess of Wales' whereabouts prior to her announcement about her diagnosis, wild conspiracy theories emerged to explain her disappearance. 

One of the most widely circulated suggested that William, Prince of Wales, may have been involved in an affair with Hanbury, who is a known friend of the royals. As the story continues to evolve, more speculations emerge daily, including some older ones. According to a story published by Marca in 2023, William reportedly ditched Middleton on Valentine's Day for Hanbury. When paired with seemingly unrelated royal comments from the same year, the scenario doesn't seem as improbable as it might initially appear.

Just weeks before the outlet ran the report, the princess visited the city of Leeds as part of her campaign for "Shaping Us," a project that aims to highlight the significance of a child's early years. During her tour, Middleton stopped to chat with a florist, who jokingly asked whether William would be getting roses for her on Valentine's Day. Interestingly, Kate cryptically responded, "I don't think he will do," (via the Daily Mail).

Prince William is reportedly a big romantic

While there's no photographic evidence or a credible source behind the rumor that Prince William opted to spend Valentine's Day with Rose Hanbury instead of his wife, the circumstances are undeniably weird. Notably, William was previously reported to be quite the romantic. In 2022, he apparently "surprised [Catherine, Princess of Wales] with a huge box of 50 roses on Valentine's Day," according to an insider who spoke to Us Weekly

Even during their first Valentine's Day as a married couple, in 2012, when William was deployed to the Falkland Islands, he still managed to send Kate Middleton a heartfelt card and flowers, per OK! magazine. Grant Harrold, King Charles III's former royal butler, confirmed that William was indeed a big romantic, sharing with Slingo, "His attention to detail is always spot on, [as is] what he does to make Kate feel important and appreciated. He's the most romantic royal," (via Express). 

Given the prince's reputation, why wouldn't Kate expect to receive flowers from him on the very Valentine's Day he reportedly spent with another woman? According to Marca, William was seen enjoying a romantic dinner with Hanbury on Valentine's Day 2023, and, shockingly, this wasn't the first time he was spotted enjoying a supposedly romantic public outing with her either. 

The alleged affair reportedly started in 2019

The first time William, Prince of Wales, was romantically linked to Rose Hanbury was in 2019 when the two were allegedly spotted together at a party. During that time, an insider divulged to Us Weekly that Catherine, Princess of Wales, was deeply affected by the scandalous rumors (not least because she and Hanbury were once close friends). The speculation caused a stir online again years later, with DeuxMoi, a celebrity gossip account on Instagram, posting a blind item in 2022 claiming that William's apparent wandering eye was an open secret in royal circles.

Fast forward to 2024, and these allegations re-emerged once more, reportedly leaving Kate distraught. A source close to the princess informed InTouch Weekly, "It's hurtful, especially because she's still recovering from major surgery." After Hanbury tried subtly shutting down the affair rumors amid Kate's disappearance, which ultimately didn't work, she directly addressed them through her legal representation, telling Business Insider: "The rumors are completely false." 

As Hanbury's relationship with William continues to pique the public's interest, none of the parties involved have commented on the scandalous Valentine's Day story. According to Marca, William even gifted Hanbury a pearl necklace at the time, judging by an account from a waiter who worked at the restaurant where they dined together. However, given the prince's prominent status and, again, the lack of any substantial evidence, it's highly likely that this story was fabricated.