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Prince William and Kate Middleton announced their engagement ten years ago - how it happened

They dreamed of having a big family

Danielle Stacey

 The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are set to mark a new milestone together – it’s been ten years since their engagement! 

Although the pair didn't officially make the announcement until 16 November 2010, Prince William revealed he proposed to his girlfriend, then Kate Middleton, of nine years while on a trip to Kenya with friends a few weeks earlier in October.

They signed a guestbook at Rutundu Cabin at the foot of Mount Kenya, which suggests it was the magical place where their engagement began. 

READ: 19 eye-opening royal wedding facts

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WATCH: Look back at Prince William and Kate Middleton's royal wedding

In the note dated 20 to 21 October 2010, Kate hinted that it had been a special stay, writing: "Thank you for such a wonderful 24 hours! Sadly no fish to be found but we had fun trying. I love the warm fires and candle lights - so romantic. Hope to be back soon."

William added: "Such fun to be back! Brought more clothes this time! Looked after so well. Thank you guys! Look forward to next time, soon I hope."

MORE: 17 breathtaking royal engagement rings

MORE: The most romantic royal proposals revealed: Meghan Markle, Kate Middleton, Princess Diana, more

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Kate and William on their wedding day in 2011

In their first interview after announcing the engagement, the Prince explained he'd planned it for a while and carried his mother's sapphire and diamond engagement ring in his rucksack for three weeks before proposing and was terrified of losing it.

Kate called the moment "very romantic," before admitting it was a "total shock," but the couple admitted they'd discussed marriage with each other a lot in the previous year.

William loves Africa and felt it was the perfect opportunity to finally ask Kate to marry him.

Talking about how important family is to both of them, Kate said at the time: "It's very important to me and I hope we'll be able to have a happy family ourselves," before William added: "Obviously we want a family, so we'll have to start thinking about that."

MORE: 12 of the most romantic royal wedding kisses through the years

MORE: 13 adorable quotes Prince William & Kate Middleton said about each other

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Kate and William with their children at Trooping the Colour 2019

William and Kate then wed the following spring on 29 April 2011 in a fairytale ceremony at Westminster Abbey and were given the titles, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Kate looked stunning in a lace and satin wedding dress, designed by Sarah Burton, the creative director for Alexander McQueen and was loaned the Cartier Halo tiara from the Queen. 

The couple are now parents to three children, welcoming Prince George on 22 July 2013, followed by daughter Princess Charlotte on 2 May 2015 and Prince Louis on 23 April 2018.

The Cambridge kids are growing up fast, with George and Charlotte now attending Thomas's Battersea school and Louis due to start nursery next year.

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