Prince William’s pet nickname for Kate Middleton before the couple were married was “babykins”, the jury in the Old Bailey hacking trial heard.
Transcripts of intimate messages between the couple were read out in court. They were discovered by detectives investigating hacking allegations against the now-defunct News of the World.
William, who left the messages while he was training at Sandhurst military academy, calls his future wife “babykins” and “baby”, tries to arrange to meet up, and also tells her he would love to see her if it is not too late or she is busy at the gym.
In one message, sent after he has finished training, William tells her he nearly got shot in an ambush on an exercise.
The story appeared in the News of the World — “William shot in ambush” — in Jan 2006.
In a voicemail read out by prosecutor Andrew Edis, William starts by saying “Hi baby” adding: “I had a busy day today again. I’ve been running around the woods of Aldershot chasing shadows and getting terribly lost, and I walked into some other regiment’s ambush, which was slightly embarrassing because I nearly got shot. Not by live rounds but by blank rounds, which would be very embarrassing though.
“Um, er, yeah, I’m off on exercise tomorrow morning, just for the day, and then I’m back on Saturday first thing, erm, so I probably won’t be able to speak to you tomorrow night.”
He then told her he might send her “a cheeky text message” because he might have his phone with him before signing off: “All right, baby, lots of love, um, speak to you soon. Bye bye.”
Among the details of the voicemails discovered by detectives at the home of private investigator Glenn Mulcaire was a call from William in which he said: “My head’s all right. I’ve just picked up your message. Oh, my little babykins! I hope you are all right. I just tried ringing you but I do not think you would pick it up because it is 5.35am in the morning so it is probably not a very good time to ring you. I hope you are all right.”
In another message William says: “Hello baby, it’s me. Sorry I did not ring you earlier and tell you what I was doing. Been a bit of a nightmare day. I think I would just about be finished in a minute.”
The “Babykins” nickname appeared in an exclusive by the paper’s royal editor, Clive Goodman, on Feb 12, 2006, which said: “Wills wants the girl he calls ‘babykins’ to be his princess.’
Prince Harry’s phone was also hacked, the jury was told. Another voicemail recovered from Mulcaire’s home involved William playing a joke on his brother by putting on a high-pitched voice as if he was Harry’s then girlfriend, Chelsy Davy.
Introducing the message to the court, Edis told the jury: “Unknown male puts on female voice pretending to be Chelsy.”
The message said: “Hi, it’s Chelsy here. I just want to say I miss you so much and I think you are the best-looking ginger I have ever seen, although you really are quite ugly for a ginger, but hope you are having a lovely time. I really miss you. It is lovely out here in Africa and hopefully I will see you very soon, you big hairy fat ginger. Anyway, speak to you later.”
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