Baker who made William and Kate's wedding cake is left out of pocket

EXCLUSIVE – ‘Queen Of Cakes’ who made William and Kate’s magnificent wedding cake is among businesses left out of pocket after Middletons’ Party Pieces went bust with £2.6M debts – with the Princess’s mother Carole left ‘deeply embarrassed’

Carole Middleton is said to be ‘mortified’ that the woman who made her daughter Kate’s wedding cake is among those left out of pocket following the collapse of her family firm Party Pieces.

High-end baker Fiona Cairns, 65, designed the magnificent cake for Kate’s wedding to Prince William in 2011 and made the christening cakes for Princes George and Louis and Princess Charlotte.

Now her eponymous company is included on the long list of creditors owed a total of £2.6m by the Middletons’ family company, which they’ve been warned they are ‘unlikely’ to see repaid.

Fiona Cairns Ltd’s unpaid debt of £3,880 is far smaller than many on the list of more than 50 trade creditors but given her intimate connection to the Middletons and the Royals, her inclusion is ‘extremely awkward and embarrassing’ for the family and Carole, according to sources.

Known as the Queen Of Cakes, Ms Cairns, based in Leicestershire, not only made the Royal couple’s wedding cake, but also a 70th Birthday cake for King Charles in 2018.

High-end baker Fiona Cairns, 65, designed the magnificent cake for Kate’s wedding to Prince William in 2011 and made the christening cakes for Princes George and Louis and Princess Charlotte

On the company’s Instagram page, Ms Cairns regularly posts her congratulations to William and Kate on their wedding anniversary each April.

Ms Cairns spoke recently about her most famous creation, the metre-high, 100kg cake which reflected the intricate lace detail of Kate’s dress in 2011.

‘It was the most stressful thing I’ve ever done,’ she told the Daily Mail.

‘I had sleepless nights beforehand because when you’ve done this for as long as I have, you know what can go wrong. We had every eventuality covered – there was even a second cake waiting – but you’re still a bag of nerves. I have to confess, I had a little weep while we were setting up in Buckingham Palace.

‘Just for a moment I was overwhelmed. We talked about all the people who were going to have a piece and, really, in those terms it’s incredible.’

She had nothing to worry about: ‘William and Kate said it had surpassed their expectations, which was wonderful. At the end of the day, all that matters with wedding cakes is that the couple involved are happy with it.’

Ms Cairns said she felt very faint when she got the call to attend Clarence House to talk about designs?

The Prince and Princess of Wales following their marriage at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011

Although she said hello to Prince William, it was Kate who sat down with her to go through ideas.

‘She was one of the most clued-up brides I’ve had,’ she said.

‘She had very definite ideas about what she wanted. The cake was to tell a story, along with the dress.’

Kate gave Fiona detailed instructions about how she wanted 17 different blooms and foliage included – each one having a different meaning or symbolism.

Fiona’s other celebrity clients have included Sir Paul McCartney, Bono, Pink Floyd and Simply Red, among the 750,000 cakes the firm turns out each year.

In 2019, Fiona Cairns also made the cake for Lady Gabriella Windsor’s Wedding at Frogmore House. Ms Cairns posted on Instagram: ‘We were so honoured to make this royal wedding cake and be part of such a special day!’

Carole Middleton has been left deeply ‘upset’ by the collapse of her own mail-order business – but admits she has been ‘naïve’, it emerged today.

The Princess of Wales’s mother has been accused of ‘betrayal’ after Party Pieces went bust, owing £2.6million to creditors already warned it is ‘unlikely’ they will recover their money.

Carole Middleton is said to be ‘mortified’ that Fiona Cairns has been left out of pocket 

Party Pieces helped send Carole and Michael’s three children to the £42,930-a-year Marlborough College as well as buy a £4.7million manor house in Berkshire. But the business started from their kitchen table has gone to the wall with huge debts.

A close friend of Mrs Middleton told the Daily Mail’s Richard Eden: ‘Carole is understandably upset and deeply disappointed in this situation.

‘Over the past five months she really has done her best to find a buyer, who not only would take the business forward, but would also honour any outstanding debts.

‘Carole believes in accountability and accepts she had been a little naïve to step back and trust someone else to run the business she had spent decades nurturing and it’s been desperately sad to see the company sold off in this way.’

The friend claims: ‘The truth is Carole had stepped back from the business over three years ago, trusting the day-to-day running to a new management team.

‘Sadly, the business took a turn for the worse and by the time she realised, it was just too late.’

However, one of her suppliers told Eden yesterday that Mrs Middleton had been giving personal assurances that debts owed by Party Pieces would be repaid in full earlier this year.

A statement published by administrators earlier this week revealed that Party Pieces owes the taxman £612,685.

The company also owes £218,749 to RBS bank for a Coronavirus Business Interruption loan, £456,008 to other creditors and £1.4 million in unsecured loans.

Party Pieces has been sold in part to Teddy Tastic Bear Company Limited for £180,000, the document says, with the firm keeping on 12 employees and remaining at its current base in Ashampstead, Berkshire.

The report adds that many owed cash will be out of pocket as a result of the business failure, saying: ‘Based on current estimates, it is uncertain whether there will be funds available to enable a distribution to preferential creditors.

‘It is unlikely there will be funds available to enable a distribution to unsecured creditors.’

The report details how the pandemic began to cause the company problems saying that revenue contracted from £4.5 million to £3.2 million between 2021 and 2022, with the company making a loss of £900,000.

Fiona Cairns Ltd declined to comment.

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