Kate Shocks Train Passenger by Chatting to Child on Way to Sports Event

Kate Middleton stunned a train passenger on his way to the Commonwealth Games on Tuesday when he emerged from a trip to the bathroom to see the royal chatting with his young son.

The chance meeting came as Kate and Prince William undertook their first official engagement accompanied by Princess Charlotte at the commonwealth sports events on August 2.

Matthew Syed, a journalist and former British table tennis champion, wrote of his surreal interaction with the future queen in his sports column for The Times on Wednesday.

Syed was traveling with his son Ted to watch the table tennis event at the Commonwealth Games which is being held in the city of Birmingham. The former champion previously won a gold medal at the 2002 games in Manchester.

Kate Middleton Commonwealth Games 2022
A train passenger was surprised to see Kate Middleton chatting with his young son during a train journey to the Commonwealth Games. Above, Kate attends the games in Birmingham, England on August 2, 2022. Stephen Pond/Getty Images

"Five minutes before pulling into Birmingham International for the NEC [arena] I use the bathroom (we are traveling first class) as Ted waits outside," he wrote. "As I am doing my thing, I hear him talking to a woman in the vestibule. 'Are you here alone?' she asks. 'No, my dad is in there,' he says pointing to the lavatory."

Syed then recounted hearing laughter and continued chatter from the pair as he opened the door and prepared to leave the train which was by that time pulling into the station.

"Thanks for keeping him company," the journalist told the mystery woman before realizing just who it was. "I am stopped in my tracks," he wrote. "'Kate?' I blurt out. There are no security guards in the vestibule, no armed guards. But here is the Duchess of Cambridge, chatting merrily with my son."

After the interaction, Syed recounted asking his son if he was aware of who he had been speaking to. "No idea but she was really nice" was the response.

Matthew Syed and Kate Middleton
Writer and Commonwealth Gold Medalist Matthew Syed was surprised to meet Kate Middleton during a recent train journey. Syed (L) is photographed above on April 1, 2010. Kate (R) is photographed on August 2, 2022, at the Commonwealth Games. Zoe Norfolk/Getty Images/CHRIS JACKSON/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

"The Duchess had no idea she was chatting to the son of a journalist," Syed wrote in The Times, "so I take this to reflect her character and sense of duty. The monarchy is in consummate hands."

Kate traveled to Birmingham to undertake a day of engagements including a visit to the games events with husband Prince William and daughter Princess Charlotte, 7.

While Kate arrived in the city ahead of her family by train, Charlotte was given a special escort to the event by a helicopter piloted by William.

Amateur video footage captured from a Birmingham airfield shows the prince landing the helicopter before being driven away with his daughter to the games.

William is a skilled pilot having flown rescue missions for the East Anglia Air Ambulance service between 2015 and 2017.

On their arrival at the games with Kate, Charlotte and William were seen greeting their royal relations Prince Edward, Sophie, Countess of Wessex and their two children: Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn.

Prince William, Princess Charlotte and Kate Middleton
Prince William and Kate Middleton visited the Commonwealth Games with their daughter, Princess Charlotte, her first solo outing as a royal. The three are photographed above on a visit to SportsAid House on August 2, 2022. CHRIS JACKSON/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

The families then watched swimming events before moving out to join crowds watching a hockey match.

Charlotte was the main focus of royal attention during the events as her first formal solo outing with her parents. The princess' colorful array of facial expressions were shared on social media with comparisons being drawn with those pulled by Prince Louis, 4, during Queen Elizabeth II's Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

For the day's events, Kate wore a white Alexander McQueen suit that she previously donned during the royal tour of the Caribbean in March. Charlotte was dressed in a coordinating black and white striped summer dress from the British childrenswear designer Rachel Riley.

Newsweek reached out to Kensington Palace for comment.

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