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I'm A Celebrity newcomer Ruthie Henshall once dated a royal!

The musical theatre star has impressive connections

Gemma Strong

Ruthie Henshall is set to cause quite a stir on I'm A Celebrity– not least because she has some impressive stories to tell around the campfire! Viewers might not be aware that the talented musical theatre star, one of two late arrivals to the camp, has an intimate connection to the British royal family – Prince Edward.

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Ruthie, 53, dated the Queen's youngest son solidly for a couple of years, and on-and-off for five. She has fond memories of her time with Edward, and has previously recounted some of her interactions with his family, including Prince Charles.

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She recalled a "cook-out" besides a loch in Scotland with Charles and Edward when she fell victim to a prank by the royal brothers.

MORE: Inside Prince Edward and Sophie's royal residence, Bagshot Park

"They told me there were ghosts in this particular place and when I went the toilet with a candle - as there was no electricity - they waited me to come out and then jumped out on me," she shared. "I screamed the place down! They were hilarious."

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Ruthie has recalled memories with Prince Charles and Prince Edward

Back in 2008, Ruthie further opened up about her royal romance while speaking to Kirsty Young on Desert Island Discs, and revealed that during their courtship, she would be smuggled into Buckingham Palace. "It always made me laugh, I'd sort of say, 'I'm going to my boyfriend's tonight'. Nobody knew who he was," she admitted.

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When asked about the romantic notion of "the Prince and the showgirl" she said: "It was very exciting, but I genuinely fell in love with him."

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Ruthie is a critically-acclaimed musical theatre star

Ultimately, however, the relationship came to an end with the realisation that she wouldn’t have been able to continue her career on stage.

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"I think I had hopes that we could walk on in our relationship but really and truthfully I think I was very aware that I wouldn't be able to do what I do for a living if I'd have stayed with him," Ruthie admitted.

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She shares two daughters with ex-husband Tim Howar

"If you think about it I would be in the theatre (doing) eight shows a week, they'd have to check out the theatre every night, check everyone's bags, it would be just impossible, and there was nothing - at that stage - that was more important than what I did."

Ruthie went on to marry actor and singer Tim Howar. The couple tied the knot in 2004, and welcomed two daughters together, before announcing their separation in August 2009.

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