How Does Queen Elizabeth Really View Kate Middleton?

Prince William met Kate Middleton while they were both studying at the University of St Andrews. The two became friends first, and then began dating some time later, according to Glamour. For Kate, dating the heir to the British throne had to be intimidating, but she seemed to handle it with ease. During the couple's engagement interview (via YouTube), Kate admitted that she turned "bright red" when she first met William, but everything ended up working out. During that same interview, Kate revealed that she was first introduced to William's grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, at a wedding in 2008. The meeting, though brief, went swimmingly, and the queen seemed to like Kate straight away. "She was very friendly, and yes, it was fine," Kate shared.

"She was very welcoming. She knew it was a big day and everything was going on with Peter and Autumn, she had wanted to meet Kate for a while, so it was very nice for her to come over and say hello, we had a little chat and got on really well," William added (via YouTube). William and Kate would go on to get married in 2011, and have since welcomed three children together. As the years have gone by, Kate has grown closer to the royal family — and to the queen. So, how does the queen really view her granddaughter-in-law? Read on to find out.

Queen Elizabeth views Kate Middleton as a 'team player'

Based on photos and videos you may have seen, it appears as though Queen Elizabeth is quite fond of Kate Middleton. However, the queen's feelings may be even stronger than that. "The queen very much regards Catherine as ... a safe pair of hands," Joe Little, the managing editor of Majesty Magazine, told Us Weekly. "[Kate has] been a member of the royal family for 10 years now. ... I think given that all that's going on in the past few years in the royal family in terms of the fallouts. ... The queen has great trust in Kate," Little added.

The future of the monarchy is already shaping up, with Prince Charles set to take the throne after the queen dies, and his son, Prince William, after his death. While that may seem like lightyears away, time is a funny thing, and that time will be here before we know it. Little added that the queen recognizes Kate as a "team player," which is really essential. "Kate has found her own niche within the royal family. And she focuses on things that mean a great deal to her that she feels that she can give something to the charity ... in a great way," Little added.

Little told Us Weekly that the queen has "great trust" in William and Kate as the future Prince and Princess of Wales and, eventually, the king and queen.