Prince William gave heartfelt grief advice to Deborah James' children which will stay with them 'forever'

The royal visited Bowel Babe at home just weeks before she passed away from cancer

HRH Prince William, Duke of Cambridge is seen during The FA Cup Final match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Wembley Stadium on May 14, 2022 in London, England.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Deborah James' husband has revealed that Prince William gave 'powerful' grief advice to his two children, just weeks before his late wife passed away.

Deborah James' husband Sebastien Bowen told The Times in an interview this weekend that Prince William joked about his late wife being 'double parked' and gave advice to his children which will 'stay with them forever'.

Sebastien, 42, who joined his two children son, Hugo, 14 and a daughter Eloise, 12, at his late wife's funeral last month, said William spoke from his experience of losing his mother at such a young age too. 

Deborah James, who also left a touching final message to her two children, died in June after being diagnosed with stage 3 bowel cancer five years ago. She went on to raise £7 million for the Bowelbabe Fund - a charity established to raise funds for clinical trials and research into personalised medicine for cancer patients.

Prince William, who lost his mother, the late Princess Diana, at just 15 years old, made a surprise visit to Deborah's home to congratulate her on her damehood, just weeks before she passed away.

But Sebastien reveals in the interview that the Duke didn't act like royalty - saying he 'felt like a friend, but he was the future king'.

While Prince William, who led tributes to Deborah James when she passed away, even joked with the cancer campaigner, about how much alcohol she had, "Deborah had a glass of champagne, a glass of wine and a glass of sherry in front of her,' the dad-of-two said.

"She hadn’t been allowed a drink for months and the first thing William said was, 'I’m glad to see you are triple parked'".

Deborah James family

(Image credit: Getty)

Prince William then proceeded to give Hugo and Eloise some advice, Sebastian reveals, "He’s obviously been through similar grief with the loss of his mother so he gave powerful advice to the children that will stay with them forever."

It was also revealed, last week, that the cancer campaigner left a touching final message for her children before her death, which has been revealed in an extract from her upcoming book, How to Live When You Could Be Dead. 

The mother-of-two told Hugo and Eloise to 'be brave' and to 'take chances', and admitted, that before her cancer diagnosis, she was afraid and anxious about day-to-day things. After advising them to 'be your number one cheerleader', she told her two children to do things that make them happy every day and to 'never criticise others for the things that make them happy.'

While she also spoke about the love of her husband - advising them to 'marry only for love', gushing that she'd 'always loved' her husband of 14 years, Sebastian. 

Sarah Finley

Sarah is a freelance journalist - writing about the royals and celebrities for Woman & Home, fitness and beauty for the Evening Standard and how the world of work has changed due to the pandemic for the BBC. 


She also covers a variety of other subjects and loves interviewing leaders and innovators in the beauty, travel and wellness worlds for numerous UK and overseas publications. 


As a journalist, she has written thousands of profile pieces - interviewing CEOs, real-life case studies and celebrities - interviewing everyone from Emma Bunton to the founder of Headspace.