Rose Hanbury has firmly addressed and denied rumours circulating about an alleged affair with Prince William, categorically stating through her legal representatives that such claims “are completely false” according to Business Insider. 

At 40 years old, Rose finds herself entangled in speculation despite being a close associate of Prince William and Princess Kate’s social circle. 

The whispers of an affair gained significant attention following a segment by Stephen Colbert on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, where the late-night host humorously brought up the alleged scandal in relation to Kate Middleton’s recent public absence following her abdominal surgery in January.

© PA Images
Kate and Rose used to be neighbours in Norfolk

Colbert’s portrayal of the rumour mill connected the Princess of Wales’s low profile to speculative whispers about Prince William’s fidelity, jesting about the discomfort such allegations might bring within the royal household. 

The situation was further complicated by controversy over a UK Mother’s Day photo of Princess Kate with her children, which was withdrawn by photo agencies over claims of manipulation, and William’s silence on questions regarding his wife’s health and recovery.

Timeline of Princess Kate’s surgery and health updates

Rose Hanbury’s ties to the royal family are longstanding and distinguished, with her grandmother Lady Elizabeth Lambart serving as one of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip’s bridesmaids in 1947. 

Since 2009, Rose has been married to David Rocksavage, the 7th Marquess of Cholmondeley, and the couple resides at Houghton Hall in Norfolk, close to William and Kate’s Anmer Hall estate. 

Rose Hanbury in a white mini dress© Dave M. Benett
Rose used to work as a model

The Cholmondeleys and the royal couple have frequently been seen together at various high-profile events, including Queen Elizabeth’s state funeral and King Charles III’s coronation in May 2023, where their son, Lord Oliver Cholmondeley, served as a page of honour alongside Prince George.

The comedic take by Colbert on the alleged affair involved quips about Rose’s noble title, “the Marchioness of Cholmondeley,” and included a fictional impersonation of William dismissing the accusations with humour. 

Kate Middleton walking with friend Rose Hanbury© PA Images
Kate Middleton walking with Rose Hanbury

Such portrayal reflects the public’s fascination and the media’s sensationalism around rumours that first surfaced in 2019, suggesting an illicit relationship between William and Hanbury. Although there were also unverified claims of a fallout between Rose and Princess Kate around the same time, the narrative around their relationship remains speculative.

Amidst these swirling rumours, an anonymous tip shared in 2022 on the Instagram gossip account Deuxmoi hinted at an extramarital affair within the British royal family, leading to widespread speculation about William’s involvement, although the royal was not explicitly named. William’s legal team has since refuted these allegations as “false and highly damaging,”

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