Prince Charles was almost kidnapped by a group of women when he was in his twenties

Prince Charles was once almost kidnapped by a group of female university students who planned to hold the prince ransom

Prince Charles was almost kidnapped
(Image credit: Photo by Matthew Horwood - WPA Pool / Getty Images)

Prince Charles was almost kidnapped by a ‘female mob’ of Manchester University students who planned to hold the Prince ransom.

A new book that focuses on the lives of the royals has suggested that Prince Charles was nearly kidnapped in the 1960s when the Prince was just 20 years old.

This was many years before Prince Charles' relationship with Princess Diana, as the couple didn't meet until nearly a decade later in 1977.

According to the Daily Mail, the authors explain that when Prince Charles was studying his Batchelor of Arts at Cambridge, the Prince preferred to cycle around campus and his Special Branch guards would follow him at a respectable distance in a, "rather beaten-up old Land Rover."

It seems that despite these security precautions, the Prince was almost kidnapped by a group of young women during Rag Week of 1968. Rag Week is an annual event where students dress up and play pranks all in the name of charity fundraising. 

Prince Charles

Prince Charles in Cambridge (1967)

(Image credit: Peter Dunne / Stringer / Getty Images)

Michael Varney, the Prince’s personal bodyguard, reportedly told the authors that the rag week events, "came within a hairsbreadth" of disaster. The bodyguard was informed by police intelligence that a group of Manchester University students, who were, "all Women’s Liibbers of the most strident kind"—ie: those supportive of the women’s liberation movement—planned to kidnap Prince Charles and hold him to ransom.

Although this plot was foiled, the authors claim that this was a well-planned operation that was almost worthy of professionals. The group, who was described by police as a, "squad of Amazons," were, "prepared to cart Prince Charles of bodily" and had prepared a getaway car and a safe house for the Prince.

Michael said that he suspects the Prince might have sympathized with their cause. However, the bodyguard was said to be painfully aware that, "it would be my head that rolled in the basket," if the kidnapping plot had been successful.

Michael also reportedly spoke to the kidnapping ringleader face to face and told her that the police knew everything and if the plan was executed, there would be legal trouble for all involved. The bodyguard also warned, "if you do go ahead and try to pull it off, I will personally see that you won't sit down for a fortnight."

After this, the kidnapping was off, but the leader made sure to call him ‘all the four-letter names’ that Michael had ever heard.

The Secret Royals: Spying and the Crown, from Victoria to Diana, is set to be published by Atlantic on Thursday, October 7, 2021.

This is one of the many books that have been published about the royals. A biography about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry was recently rereleased by authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand. 

Similarly, Prince Harry is set to release an 'accurate and wholly truthful' royal memoir about his life, which is set to be published in late 2022.

Laura Harman

Laura is the Entertainment Editor for woman&home who primarily covers television, film, and celebrity news. Laura loves drinking and eating and can often be found trying to get reservations at London's trendiest restaurants. When she's not wining and dining, Laura can also be found travelling, baking, and hiking with her dog.