Prince William?s girlfriend Kate Middleton has been caught in the photography spotlight – on both sides of the lens.

Middleton, a keen photographer, is set to win at least £10,000 in an out-of-court settlement over alleged invasion of her privacy, according to a report in yesterday?s Sunday Times.

The expected payout relates to pictures of Middleton on a tennis court and at a family lunch in Cornwall last Christmas.

A photographer – named by the newspaper as Niraj Tanna from an agency called Ikon Pictures – is said to have taken pictures of her playing tennis from a public footpath.

A source close to the agency today told Amateur Photographer (AP): ‘They were pictures of her while she was on a communal tennis court, taken from a public footpath.

‘She was posing for the camera in the sense that she knew the photographer was there ? she was playing up to the camera.?

The Sunday Times reported that other photographs show her family having Christmas lunch.

However, the Ikon Pictures source today strongly denied that any such images were taken by its photographer. ?There were never any pictures of her having lunch.?

AP understands that the photographer captured around 50 images using a Canon DSLR and 70-200mm zoom lens from an ?elevated? footpath that overlooks the tennis court.

Only 12-15 of the pictures are believed to have been distributed to the media.

We understand that the images were only made available for publication once the agency had satisfied itself that they would not breach UK press guidelines.

The pictures were not published in the UK but one image appeared in a German newspaper.

Middleton is reported to have pursued damages for invasion of privacy and is seeking an apology from the agency, through London-based law firm Harbottle & Lewis.

No-one from Harbottle & Lewis was available for comment when contacted by AP this morning.

Meanwhile, Middleton is reported to have been banned from pursuing a career as a photographer, according to the Daily Star newspaper.

The paper reports that Royal officials have persuaded Prince William that it would be ?inappropriate? for a future member of the Royal Family.

Photography careers are nothing new to the Royals. Both Lord Snowdon and the late Lord Lichfield carved out, and maintained, hugely successful careers as photographers.