Prince Edward, Duke of Wessex and Sophie, Countess of Wessex pose for photographs ahead their 20th wedding anniversary on day one of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 18, 2019 in Ascot, England

Prince Edward, Duke of Wessex and Sophie, Countess of Wessex pose for photographs ahead their 20th wedding anniversary on day one of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 18, 2019 in Ascot, EnglandPhoto by Chris Jackson/Getty Images

And that Sophie kept the relationship on track 

Prince Edward and his wife Sophie Wessex have been married for twenty years and have two young children, but a royal biographer has revealed that long before the pair made it down the aisle, Edward got cold feet about the relationship. 

The marriage between Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex is thought to be one of the most secure in royal circles, with the pair largely choosing to stay out of the limelight with their children 15-year-old Lady Louise Windsor and 11-year-old James, Viscount Severn. 

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Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex and Sophie, Countess of Wessex attend the annual Order of the Garter Service at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on June 13, 2011 in Windsor, England. The Order of the Garter is the senior and oldest British Order of Chivalry, founded by Edward III in 1348. Membership in the order is limited to the sovereign, the Prince of Wales, and no more than twenty-four members. (Photo by Arthur Edwards - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex and Sophie, Countess of Wessex attend the annual Order of the Garter Service at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on June 13, 2011 in Windsor, England. The Order of the Garter is the senior and oldest British Order of Chivalry, founded by Edward III in 1348. Membership in the order is limited to the sovereign, the Prince of Wales, and no more than twenty-four members. (Photo by Arthur Edwards - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

However, royal author Ingrid Seward's booked entitled Prince Edward reveals that before the pair got engaged, the realities of life as a royal for commoner Sophie as well as the speed of their relationship put a strain on the pair that saw Edward get "cold feet."

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Edward first met Sophie in 1987 while through one of her friends and met her again at a charity event in 1993, at which stage they started to date.

However, ever the pragmatist Sophie remained constant throughout this time. With Seward saying: "Like all couples there were moments when the effort of adjusting led to rows and disagreements and, in the summer of 1994, they came precariously close to parting. Edward became what one friend described as ‘unnerved’ by the speed which the affair was developing.

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"But, if Edward was wracked by indecision (a not-uncommon problem amongst male members of his family) Sophie remained coolly determined. 

“She was not prepared to let the relationship flounder,” Seward added. “When rumors of the rift became public she dismissed them as ‘rubbish.’ She was being elastic with the truth, but it did give her the breathing space she needed to get her relationship back on track again.”

The pair went on to announce their engagement in January 1999 before getting married in June of the same year at St George's Chapel in Windsor.