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Royal runaway: How Kate and William narrowly avoided ‘disaster’ on wedding day

Kate and William will be celebrating their 10th wedding anniversary next year. The couple have come to exemplify the Royal Family’s values in recent years, and regularly cause a delighted stir among royal watchers by posting images of their three children on social media — Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis. As the future King and Queen consort, they have been in the spotlight ever since they announced their engagement back in 2010.

The couple had been dating since 2003, but Kate gave her first public interview only after William had proposed.

She was therefore still quite unused to the scrutiny that comes with being a royal — and one particular event threatened to unnerve her on her wedding day, when an estimated 23 million people were watching her.

Journalist Caroline Gammell reported on their wedding day, April 29, 2011, that Kate was “spooked by a runaway horse” which threw its rider off near the royal carriage.

The newly-wed Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were on their way out of Westminster Abbey at the time, to start on the royal procession around the London streets.

Ms Gammell claimed: “Miss Middleton, who is allergic to the animals, looked alarmed as the horse catapulted its rider to the ground and had to be restrained by a mounted police officer after the royal wedding.”

William then “offered a few calming words to his new bride” as the horse was frightened by the cheering crowds around Parliament Square and Whitehall.

She continued: “The rider scrambled to his feet and managed to take the reins and pull the horse to one side as the royal couple passed.”

A spectator, Claire Davis, told The Telegraph: “Quite a few people gasped when the soldier fell off.

“The rider did well to stop it going into the crowd at a crucial moment.

“If it had gone into the crowd, it could have been a disaster.”

Others claimed Kate “looked a little bit worried” as the events unfolded.

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Another rider then grabbed the horse’s reins and tried to advise the fallen rider to remount, but it was difficult for either to maintain control.

The horse was trying to follow the other horses while the riders needed to take it to the side of the barrier in order to remount.

Fortunately, the rider was free of injury and the day was able to proceed without further incident.

Royal author Marcia Moody has since disputed the claim that Kate is allergic to horses.

She told Town & Country in 2017: “Kate doesn’t ride, purely because [she] didn’t do it growing up.

“William and Harry were taught from an early age, but the only time they ride now is for polo — they don’t go off on hacks like the Queen always has.”

The Telegraph also reported in 2012 that, during a conversation with Paralympic medallist Lee Pearson at Buckingham Palace, Kate admitted she had taken up horseriding.

Mr Pearson told the newspaper: “Kate said she’s learning to ride so I offered to give her some lessons.”

The Countess of Wessex then told him Kate was allergic to horses, and he replied: “So am I but antihistamines are wonderful.”


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