Who is Kate Middleton’s mom? Carole Middleton, explained

Who is Kate Middleton’s mom? Carole Middleton, explained

Now that The Princess of Wales, Kate Middleton, is out of the hospital and recovering from abdominal surgery, she’s been seen out publicly recently with her mother, Carole Middleton, who is said to have been instrumental in setting up the future Queen of England with her husband, Prince William Arthur Philip Louis, the Prince of Wales. With all this attention, people are curious about Carole and her background. So who is she?

Carole Elizabeth Middleton was born Carole Goldsmith in January 1955. In addition to being Kate’s mom, she is also the mother of two of Kate’s siblings – Philippa “Pippa” Middleton, and James Middleton. She is the grandmother of Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis, who are second, third and fourth in line to the British Throne after their father, Prince William. She lives in a $6 million home known as Bucklebury Manor in Berkshire, which is a very short drive to Buckingham Palace.

Carole was born in Perivale, London to Ronald and Dorothy Goldsmith, both of whom have passed away. Her younger brother is IT recruitment wizard Gary Goldsmith, a multi-millionaire in his field. She describes herself as a working class woman who got her work ethic from her parents. In a 2021 interview with Good Housekeeping, she revealed that her father “was a builder” and her mother “worked part-time in a jewelry shop.” She said they worked “hard to make ends meet and give us a lifestyle.”

I’m not someone to sit on the sofa for a long time,” she said. “I have a lot of energy and enjoy my work. I grew up watching my parents, who both worked extremely hard.”

Carole originally had aspirations to be a teacher, but unfortunately, Carole’s parents weren’t able to pay for her to go to college, so she entered the business world as a shop assistant for John Lewis, a high end department store at the time. After that, she worked as a secretary for British Airways, making her way to flight attendant after a stint in the ground crew.

She met her husband Michael Middleton at British Airways when he was working as a flight dispatcher in the 1970s, and they got married in Buckinghamshire, England on June 21, 1980. She hasn’t talked much about her wedding or shared many photos publicly, but her daughter-in-law Alizee Thevenet did wear Carole’s old wedding dress when she got married to Carole’s son, James.

“It fitted me perfectly and was exactly what I wanted,” Alizee said about the Bardot-neck gown. “It always troubled me that wedding dresses are only worn once so it was amazing to give such a beautiful dress a second lease of life.”

Carole and her husband raised their children in Bucklebury. Princess Kate said her love of the outdoors was nurtured by her parents, and that she loved spending time outdoors with her family. In an appearance on the Happy Mum, Happy Baby podcast, Kate said, “I remember that from my childhood – doing the simple things, going for a walk together, and that’s really what I try and do with my children as well because it totally strips away all the complications, all the pressures … as a parent and I think these experiences as well mean so much to children and the world that they’re in which is a real adventure for them at that age.”

The Middleton family was not directly royal, but did have an aristocratic connection: Michael’s grandmother is the aristocrat Olive Christiana Middleton, and her inheritance to Michael resulted in the family having a good amount of wealth. Another thing that helped the Middleton’s rise in social classes was the business Carole started in 1987, called “Party Pieces.”

“My children inspired my business and have been involved from the start,” she relayed to the Daily Mail. “The success that we’ve had has helped us build the life we have currently. I feel incredibly fortunate to have found the professional fulfillment I always wanted.”

The business started small, with Carole working on ideas at the kitchen table. She decided to strike off on her own after repeated dismissals from other businesses. All of the Middleton children pitched in to help the business thrive; Kate worked as a project manager for the company before she married the Prince.

The beginning of the business was a real family affair built from the ground up. Carole said she and her husband “were young and a little inexperienced, but very enthusiastic, so we didn’t worry too much.” She took setbacks in stride and made sure she had fun while working.

“When Michael and I first started Party Pieces, we did everything ourselves. Taking orders, filling boxes and sometimes making the deliveries. … They say if you do a job you enjoy, you don’t work a day in your life, and I truly feel like that; even when it’s very busy.”

Fortunately, the business survived and even thrived during the pandemic. “We were very lucky in that we were able to keep trading; and while demand dropped for certain ranges such as hen parties, it grew for other pieces such as personalised cakes and balloon bouquets that people were sending straight to someone’s door,” Carole said.

Carole is notoriously prim and proper, but when she does give interviews, she gushes about her children and is proud of her business. “For me, my personal and my business life are not two separate things; they are both an essential and interwoven part of who I am.” That strategy has really paid off, because after three decades the business grew into a multi-million dollar venture. Recently, she sold the business to an entrepreneur.

Carole was also extremely close with Queen Elizabeth. The Queen was especially taken with Carole’s attitude and her lack of delusions of grandeur despite being the mother of the future Queen. Queen Elizabeth took special care to invite the Middletons to a large number of events and celebrations, and she thought that was especially important, because Prince William lost his mother when he was a young boy.

Another thing the late Queen admired about Carole was how dedicated she is to her grandchildren. Royal expert Ingrid Seward told People that Carole takes the time “to read to them, play with them and do all the things you want a granny to do.”

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