A never-before seen photograph of Kate Middleton has been released 

Taken during her student days, it’s a far cry from the images we are used to seeing of the Duchess 

kate middleton leopard print
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Taken during her student days, it’s a far cry from the images we are used to seeing of the Duchess 

Photographs of Kate Middleton routinely attract audiences of millions, and so a royal photographer couldn’t believe it when he discovered a never-before seen snap of the Duchess in his archives. 

Arthur Edwards, Royal Photographer at the Sun, released the image just before the Duchess’s 40th birthday last month. The photo shows a young, shy-looking Kate, then a student at the University of St Andrews, with friends outside Sandringham. Prince William had invited the group of university pals to the estate for a weekend away. 

kate middleton accessorize earrings

Getty Images

Arthur wrote in the Sun, “The first time I took a photograph of Kate Middleton, I didn’t know who on Earth she was. It was only when I was looking through some old photographs recently that I spotted Kate among William’s pals. And you would not recognise her.”

“As the years go by she is changing, overcoming her natural shyness and becoming more confident," Arthur continued. "She is intelligent, pays great attention to detail and never gets it wrong. On jobs, I look at her and think: ‘You look just great.’”

The photographer also commented on Kate’s relationship with the future King: “As well as seeing her grow into a graceful beauty, I watched her romance with William slowly develop until she became his girlfriend.”

Getty Images

Shortly after the couple’s engagement, Arthur recalls asking the Prince about why they’d briefly split in 2007: 

“I imagine it was because he came from a broken home that [Prince William] replied: ‘Well, Arthur, I had to be sure this was the right woman for me because I want this marriage to last forever.’”

Arthur concluded the article by stating that he feels “confident they will be together to the end”. Given how loved up the couple appear in recent photographs, we can see why.

Kate Hollowood
Kate Hollowood is a freelance journalist and writes about a range of topics for Marie Claire UK, from reports on royal news and current affairs to features on health, careers and relationships. Based in London, Kate has also written for titles like the i paper, Refinery29, Cosmopolitan and It’s Nice That.