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'I watched as Tara Palmer-Tomkinson helped Kate and Wills get back together'

By Kelly Allen

Tara Palmer-Tomkinson's life might have been a world away from my own, but for a decade we were friends.

The 45-year-old​ schmoozed with royals and was the ultimate 'It girl', but she always had time for a chat and always stopped to swap gossip on the red carpet.

Having moved to London from Belfast, I first met her at the St Trinian's premiere in 2007.

More: Northern Ireland tributes to 'kind, vulnerable' It girl Tara Palmer-Tomkinson

She jokingly told me she was worse than the naughty schoolgirls in the film, saying: "I was a bad girl at school.

"I drew a massive willy on the hockey pitches with weed killer, then I got done for vandalism. Our school was very strict."

Every time I saw Tara, she would always greet me the same way, by groping my cleavage and joking: "Sorry, it's because I don't have them.

"It's admiration and envy."

A party was always more fun and more exciting if Tara was on the list because she just couldn't help but get up to some sort of mischief.

And I witnessed first-hand how she managed to get Prince William back with his now wife, Kate Middleton.

The couple had a brief split in 2007 and Kate was being offered big money for interviews and even a million quid to go on I'm A Celebrity.

I was at a party at Asprey jewellers in Mayfair and Kate turned up with her sister, Pippa, who was relatively unknown at the time.

Tara, who was Prince Charles' god-daughter, cornered Kate and immediately asked her: "Do you want him back?"

She of course said: "Yes. I love him."

Tara told her: "Keep your chin up. Say nothing, do nothing and you'll be fine and he'll come back."

Of course, she had known Princes William and Harry since they were children, and had previously talked about how they had grown up together.

Kate was hanging on her every word and the rest is history.

From that chat, as well as regular ski trips to Klosters, Tara and Kate went on to become good friends and the socialite was there when the pair tied the knot at Westminster Abbey in 2011.

Celebrities have come out to lead the tributes to her, with Prince Charles also paying his respects.

Kelly Allen
Kelly Allen

Like everyone who knew her, I'm sure he will miss the naughty twinkle in her eye and the fun-spirited way she lived her life.

Kelly Allen is a showbiz reporter for Sunday Life

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