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Who is Cressida Bonas?


Bookies have slashed odds on Prince Harry and his girlfriend Cressida Bonas announcing their engagement after the couple were pictured together for the first time at two public events in the past three days. While it may seem a bit hasty to speculate on wedding rumours, we're intrigued enough to find out more about the royal's 24-year-old dance graduate partner. Here are ten things to know about the prince's other half Cressida - or Cressy, as she's known to friends:

1. Cressida met Harry through his cousin Princess Eugenie

Cressida has long been part of Princess Eugenie's social circle and the royal is understood to have played match-maker and introduced the pair two years ago. Cressida's half-sister Isabella Calthorpe also has links to the royal family; although she's now married to Virgin heir Sam Branson, she was romantically linked to Prince William back in the day. In addition, Cressida once dated Harry Wentworth-Stanley, whose stepfather is a cousin of the Queen.

2. They started dating in 2012

Soon after Prince Harry said he was looking for someone who would be able to endure press scrutiny and the huge public attention of being his girlfriend. "I’m not so much searching for someone to fulfil the role, but obviously, you know, finding someone that would be willing to take it on," he said in an interview with US television. Harry had been on the market for three years - his relationship with previous long-term girlfriend Chelsy Davy ended in 2009.

3. Cressida is a Leeds university graduate

The 24-year-old studied dance at Leeds and showcased her flair for performance by taking on the lead role of Desdemona in a university production of Othello. Before uni Cressida attended Stowe School, an independent co-educational boarding school in Buckingham.

4. She now works in marketing in Soho

And is said to have a security pass for Kensington Palace, Prince Harry's official London base. She also shares an apartment in the capital with one of her sisters.

5. Cressida appeared in ITV2 reality show Trinity

She had a cameo in the 2009 show, which starred her half-sister Isabella. The role involved then 20-year-old Cressida wearing a Superman cheerleader costume (she's pictured far left in this photo).

6. And she's a Glasto fan

Unusually perhaps, for someone in the royal circle, Cressida is happy to kick back with the best of them at the UK's most famous music festival. Here she is working some festival style with a plate of chips at last year's Glastonbury.

7. Cressida's mother is model Lady Mary Gaye Curzon

Cressida's mother Lady Mary has plenty of royal connections - her late father, Edward Curzon, was the 6th Earl Howe and godson of King Edward VII. She brings her pet Pekingese 'Pocket' with her wherever she goes.

Cressida's father and Lady Mary's ex-husband, Jeffrey Bonas, is chairman of the haberdashery firm MacCulloch &  Wallis. The family seat, Penn House in Buckinghamshire, dates back to the 16th Century.

8. Cressida is part of a large family of siblings

Her eldest sibling is 40-year-old half-sister Pandora. Her other three half-siblings are Georgina, an artist, actress Isabella - known as Bella, and bachelor Jacobi.

9. Cressida has shared several holidays with Harry

They travelled to Necker Island in the Caribbean (owned by Sir Richard Branson, whose son is married to Cressida's half-sister) in August last year, with a large group of friends. Harry is also said to have whisked her away for a romantic weekend at Sandringham Estate in Norfolk last weekend.

The couple have been to celebrity events such as the London premiere of Dark Knight Rises in July 2012 - but are careful never to be photographed together until now.

10. Harry and Cressy (Hessy?) have now attended two public events together

The pair had previously gone out of their way to avoid being photographed together in public. But on Friday, Cressida happily posed for pictures as she accompanied Harry to a We Day UK youth charity event at Wembley Arena (above). She was spotted yelling out to Harry as he addressed the 12,000-strong crowd and the couple later cosied up together in a VIP arena with Princess Beatrice, Cressida’s half-sister Isabella and her husband Sam Branson.

The couple's appearance together just two days later at the England Vs Wales rugby match at Twickenham this weekend was seized on by commentators as proof of their increasingly serious bond. The two seemed happy and relaxed in one another's presence and did not shy away from the (inevitable) press attention.

This weekend's public outings are said to be paving the way for a trip to Balmoral this summer, where Cressida will likely be introduced to the Queen.

Could a royal engagement be on the cards? Bring it on, we say...

Photos: Rex Features



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