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The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attend a fundraising dinner for the University of St Andrews appeal

9th November 2012

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have remembered the first time they met at a lavish fundraising dinner for the University of St Andrews in central London.

The royal couple were supporting the University's 600th Anniversary Appeal which aims to provide financial support for able students who would not otherwise be able to study at St Andrews. Their Royal Highnesses arrived to the sound of bagpipes at Middle Temple - one of the ancient Inns of Court - where The Duke is an honorary barrister and member of the institution's governing body.

The Duke and Duchess met a selection of current students, staff and alumni of the university during a reception before dinner.

His Royal Highness is Patron of the campaign which he launched in February last year during a visit to St Andrews with The Duchess.

Addressing students, lecturers and alumni, he said: "Tonight is very special for Catherine and me. It brings together two institutions that are dear to us: our alma mater, St Andrews University, and Middle Temple, our hosts here tonight.

"First of all, we have been privileged to receive the best university educations. Secondly, we all love St Andrews. We love it for the academic start in life it gave us.

"We love it for its traditions - traditions that lie at the very heart of Scotland's history. We love it because it made us look beyond St Andrews, beyond the borders of Scotland, to the wide world. But perhaps most important of all, we love it for the friendships it has given us."

The Duke and Duchess first met at St Andrews and they both graduated in 2005 with a 2:1. The Duchess chose to do his honours degree in Geography while The Duchess chose Art History.

A speech by The Duke of Cambridge at the University of St Andrews 600th Anniversary Appeal Dinner at Middle Temple Hall

Published on 8th November 2012

Ladies and Gentleman,

Tonight is very special for Catherine and me. It brings together two institutions that are dear to us: our alma mater, St Andrews University, and Middle Temple, our hosts here tonight. Both are world-renowned. Both are roughly of the same venerable age. We are proud to be so closely associated with them.‬‪‬‪

600 years have passed since Pope Benedict sent his Bull to King James I of Scotland and Bishop Wardlaw, founding our University, Scotland’s oldest. Actually, it could be 599 or 601 years ago – our School of Mathematics was clearly not as strong back then as it has become. But who’s counting? The point is that scores of generations have passed through its halls since then. All those brilliant minds…especially all of us who did Geography!... have two things in common.

‬‪‬‪ First of all, we have been privileged to receive the best of university educations. Secondly, we all love St Andrews. We love it for the academic start in life it gives us. We love it for its traditions - traditions that lie at the very heart of Scotland’s history. We love it because it made us look beyond St Andrews, beyond the borders of Scotland, to the wide world. But perhaps most important of all, we love it for the friendships it has given us. As I look around this hall tonight – and even take a peek at the person sitting three from my left – I thank God for those friendships - our friendship - forged in our ancient halls. I even include in that one of my alma mater, who shall remain nameless, here tonight who rang me today t ...

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