taj-mahal-cover

Flashback Friday: the story behind this Prince William and Kate cover

HELLO!'s co-editor Thomas Whitaker recalls William and Kate's tour of India and Bhutan

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It is one of the most magical monuments in the world and a striking symbol of love. So when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge posed in front of the Taj Mahal there was never any doubt that the image would appear on the front cover of HELLO! Their visit to the Taj came at the end of a seven-day tour of India and Bhutan in April 2016. Taking their places on a marble bench in front of the imposing building and with their knees touching they exchanged loving glances as the cameras whirled.

Kate, in a white dress with a royal blue motif by Indian born designer Naeem Khan, was to tell her guide Rizwan Mohammed that she had found the timing of the visit, ahead of their fifth wedding anniversary on 29 April, particular poignant. "She said it is the perfect thing to do before their wedding anniversary. She was quite happy about it," said Rizwan. William was asked what the visit had meant to him, replying: "It's a beautiful place, stunning designs in there. It is beautiful, isn't it? It was overwhelming."

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Prince William and Kate visited India in April 2016

Much was to be made in the press about how Diana had sat on the same bench 24 years earlier alone, for many a signal that her marriage was on the rocks. But a royal spokesman was keen to play that down saying at the time: "For the Duke of Cambridge, his mother's visit to the Taj Mahal is not a particularly strong memory at all. He has many other memories of his mother that are much more important to him. They wanted to come to the Taj because it is one of the wonders of the world. It's a very good way to finish the tour, by promoting one of India's greatest sights."

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