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Kate Middleton and Prince William’s Christmas special, A Berry Royal Christmas with Mary Berry, aired in the UK last night, and among the clips to get buzz on Twitter was this very awkward moment between the typically reserved couple. William appeared to touch Kate’s shoulder in the video only to have his wife literally shake him off while keeping a TV-ready smile plastered to her face. She does not want to be touched, especially when cameras are rolling.
Kate and William have always been more reserved with PDA when on engagements. And there’s no royal protocol for or against PDA, by the way. It’s strictly based on preference.
As Beaumont Etiquette‘s founder and director Myka Meier, a British-American trained by a former member of the Queen’s household, told ELLE.com in July 2018, “I always think the important thing to remember is that people forget that they’re working royals.”
“It’s up to each and every royal and royal couple about how affectionate they are,” she continued. “There’s no protocol that tells them they can’t hug or kiss or touch. There’s no rule book like that. Each senior member of the royal family is trusted to make the judgement calls of what’s appropriate and when. It’s all about being trusted to make those calls on their own.”
Kate and William have traditionally been the most affectionate at casual events. “If you’re going to a sporting event you’re going to be much more jovial and with [William and Kate], we’ve even seen them kissing or hugging,” Meier said. “We saw them hugging at [the Olympics]. But then as they go to a much more serious event, as if to commemorate a battle, they’re very solemn.”
What kind of event Mary Berry’s A Berry Royal Christmas is, Kate and William decided on their own…and clearly they had different views on appropriate PDA momentarily, that the camera captured.