6 JULY 2007

Bookies would do well to start taking bets again on an eventual engagement for Prince William and Kate Middleton. The Prince and his pretty brunette sweetheart are said to be "closer than ever" - despite the scepticism of some observers, including readers, over the possibility of a lasting commitment between the pair.

According to The Sun, the royal has persuaded Kate that "the problems of dating a future king are a price worth paying" so they can be together again.

"Only when they took a step back did they have space to examine how they really felt about each other," said a source close to the couple. "They have now talked through their problems and are closer than ever."

While Clarence House has said it will not be drawn into a "running commentary" about William's love life, recent sightings of Kate and her Prince have spoken volumes. On Wednesday the 25-year-old, who is an accessories buyer with high street retailers Jigsaw, was pictured with a carefree smile on her face. Svelte as ever in skinny-fit white jeans and a floaty ethnic-style top, Kate had a definite spring in her step, and on her finger was the friendship ring William gave her, which she's continued to wear despite their split 12 weeks ago.

Witnesses also described how, at a party following the Concert For Diana, the young lovebirds smooched openly, dancing passionately to 'their' song I Like To Move It. The duo are now said to be about to make their reconciliation public at a polo match, and will also attend a Middleton family wedding together later this summer.

Photo: ©
William and Kate were last pictured together in public looking somewhat strained at the Cheltenham races in March, since then their relationship has come full circle, with the Prince said to be ready to be by the pretty brunette's side again Photo: © RexClick on photo to enlarge
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