Carole Middleton

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Carole Middleton
Carole Elizabeth Middleton on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.jpg
Middleton stands on the balcony of Buckingham Palace at the Royal Wedding in 2011
BornCarole Elizabeth Goldsmith
(1955-01-31) 31 January 1955 (age 63)
Perivale Maternity Hospital, Perivale, London, England

Carole Elizabeth Middleton (née Goldsmith; born 31 January 1955)[1][2] is a former flight attendant turned businesswoman, and mother of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, Pippa Middleton and James Middleton.

Middleton's first three grandchildren, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis of Cambridge, are third, fourth and fifth in line to the British throne respectively.

Early life[edit]

Carole Middleton was born in 31 January 1955 at Perivale Maternity Hospital in Perivale, London, the daughter of Dorothy Harrison and Ronald Goldsmith; she is the older sister of IT recruitment multi-millionaire Gary Goldsmith.[3] She spent her early years in a small house in Southall, attending the local state schools.[4][5]

She met flight dispatcher Michael Francis Middleton while working with British Airways as a flight attendant. The couple were married on 21 June 1980 at the Church of St James in Dorney, Buckinghamshire. Leeds-born Michael was the son of pilot Captain Peter Middleton,[6] whose mother Olive, was a member of the Lupton family who are described in the City of Leeds archives as being "landed gentry; a political and business dynasty".[7][8]

Business success and husband's inherited wealth[edit]

In 1986, she and her family returned to West Berkshire, Bradfield Southend, after spending two-and-a-half years in Jordan. Her eldest daughter, Catherine, was aged four and attending the private preparatory college St Andrew's School, Pangbourne.[9] In 1987, Middleton established Party Pieces, a company which began by making party bags and which now sells party supplies and decorations by mail order. In 1995, under the joint leadership of Carole and Michael, the firm’s growth necessitated its headquarters be moved to a range of farm buildings at Ashampstead Common.[10][11]

The family's wealth is the result of the success of their business combined with the trust funds inherited from Olive Christiana Middleton (née Lupton), whom the BBC reported in 2011 as being Michael Middleton's aristocrat grandmother.[12] This wealth has resulted in the Middletons being reported to be multi-millionaires.[13][14][15]

Carole and her husband Michael own Bucklebury Manor, in Bucklebury, West Berkshire - a substantial Grade II-listed Georgian manor house set on over 18 acres. The Middletons' grandson, Prince George, spent his first few weeks at Bucklebury Manor. In 2002, Carole and Michael Middleton bought "with cash" a flat in Chelsea, London, in which their children lived after completing their university studies.[16]

The gold chevron on the coat of arms taken out by her husband Michael is in reference to Carole's maiden name of Goldsmith.[17]



Research revealed in 2011 that Carole Middleton's great-great-grandmother, Jane Liddle (d. 1881), was a great-great-granddaughter of Sir Thomas Blakiston Conyers, 9th Bt (1731–1810), himself a descendant of King Edward IV.[18] It was reported in December 2014 that Sir Thomas Conyers shared a direct ancestor with Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, née Bowes-Lyon (1900–2002). Their common ancestor was County Durham's Sir William Blakiston. The famous Blakiston-Bowes Cabinet, held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, was created to celebrate the union of the Blakiston baronets and the Bowes-Lyon family. This connection makes Carole a distant blood cousin of the Queen Mother.[19][20]


Carole's maternal great-grandfather was Durham coal miner John Harrison (1874–1956). Her paternal great-great-grandfather was John Goldsmith (d. 1888), a labourer and brick maker from Hoxton in the East End of London.[21]


  1. ^ Bradbury, Poppy (3 May 2011), "Kate Middleton's mum's old school hosts Royal Wedding party", Ealing Gazette, archived from the original on 21 March 2012
  2. ^ "Person Page 20097". Retrieved 4 May 2011.
  3. ^ Tominey, Camilla (24 March 2013). "Is Gary Goldsmith really the Black Sheep of the Middleton family?". UK Express. Retrieved 29 November 2014.
  4. ^ Smith, Sean (2011). "Chapter 1". Kate: A Biography of Kate Middleton. First Gallery Books. p. Page 2. Retrieved 29 November 2014. Eventually Dorothy and Ron moved into a council flat nearby before borrowing the deposit to buy a small house of their own in Southall, where they were living when Carole was born in 1955.
  5. ^ "News: Kate Middleton's Southall connections". Retrieved 6 May 2011.
  6. ^ Tominey, Camilla (14 February 2016). "Truth behind Prince George's love of aviation". Daily Express. UK. Retrieved 19 February 2015. It (the photograph) shows the Duchess of Cambridge’s grandfather, Captain Peter Middleton, with Prince Philip in 1962...
  7. ^ City of Leeds Archives, Leodis,. "Headingley Castle". Leodis – A Photographic Archive of Leeds. UK Government. Retrieved 14 May 2013.
  8. ^ Rayner, Gordon. "Middle-class Duchess of Cambridge's relative wore crown and attended George Vs coronation". UK Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 14 May 2013. News – page 7; "(Michael Middleton's) ancestors were very much landed gentry, and as we now know some of them were titled." (Page 7) Middle-class Duchess of Cambridge's relative wore crown and attended George Vs coronation
  9. ^ "Duchess of Cambridge returns to St Andrew's School". Retrieved 25 February 2016. Catherine joined the school at four years old when her family returned to West Berkshire in 1986 after spending two-and-a-half years in Jordan.
  10. ^ Party Pieces Princess in News of the World (21 November 2010), pg. 4
  11. ^ "About us". Retrieved 19 February 2011.
  12. ^ "Royal wedding: Family tree". UK: BBC News. 13 April 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2015. He (R. Noel Middleton) attended Clifton College in Bristol as a boarder before heading to Leeds University and qualifying as a solicitor. He met and married aristocrat Olive Christiana Lupton.
  13. ^ A Photographic Archive of Leeds, Leodis. "Potternewton Hall, Potternewton Lane". UK Gov. City of Leeds. Retrieved 12 November 2014. When Olive Middleton died in 1936, her will shows that she left a personal estate of £52,031. Olive's will also discloses that by 1936 there were three separate family trusts in operation controlling the bulk of her and her family's fortune
  14. ^ Lewis, Jason (27 November 2010). "How a Victorian industrialist helped Kate Middleton's parents". UK Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 12 November 2014. By 1936 there were three separate family trusts in operation controlling the bulk of her and her family's fortune
  15. ^ "Generation why-should-I?". Edinburgh: Retrieved 4 May 2011.
  16. ^ Brennan, Zoe (19 March 2011). "The family fortune of the minted Middletons". UK Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 27 June 2015. This (flat) was bought with cash for £780,000 in 2002 and is worth some £1.2 million now (in 2011). Land Registry records show there is no mortgage on it.
  17. ^ Bates, Stephen (19 April 2011). "Kate Middleton's coat of arms blends in-jokes, symbolism and history". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
  18. ^ Child, Christopher Challander. "Child, Christopher Challender (Fall 2011). "A Gratifying Discovery: Connecting Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, to Sir Thomas Conyers, 9th Bt. of Horden, Durham". American Ancestors (New England Historic Genealogical Society) 12 (4): 35–36" (PDF). New England Genealogical Society Fall 2011. Retrieved 12 November 2013.
  19. ^ Perring, Rebecca (8 December 2014). "Proof Kate Middleton IS related to Queen Mother: Duchess to view cabinet proving ancestry". UK Daily Express. Retrieved 14 December 2014.
  20. ^ Banerjee, Nirajita. "Destined For Royalty: Kate Middleton Shares an Ancestor With the Late Queen Mother, Reveals Historian". International Business Times, 9 December 2014. Retrieved 14 December 2014.
  21. ^ Reitwiesner, William Addams. "Ancestry of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge". New England Historic Genealogical Society, April 2011. Retrieved 14 December 2014.

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