Friday 29 April 2011 at Westminster Abbey – They say when you love someone truly from your heart; every particle on earth unites and helps you to bring your love close to you. That was exactly what was seen on Friday, April 29, 2011, when Prince William, Duke of Cambridge married Catherine Middleton at Westminster Abbey, at 11:00 am British Summer Time (15:30 IST) during the Royal Wedding. William, who is second in the line of succession to Elizabeth II, first met Middleton in 2001, while both were students at the University of St Andrews. Their engagement, which began on 20 October 2010, was announced on 16 November 2010.
“Your Wedding day is just the start
Of a lifetime full of love and fun.
It just begins as you take your vows,
When the two of you are joined as one;
We wish for you sweet happiness;
Through the years, may your love grow,
To warm you both from day to day,
In your marriage’s satisfying glow.”
The Royal Wedding Invitation
Previously on November 16, 2010, Clarence House announced that Prince William, elder son of the Prince of Wales, was to marry Catherine Middleton, William’s long-time girlfriend, “in the Spring or Summer of 2011, in London”.
William & Kate met at St. Andrews University in Scotland. She first caught his eye when she participated in a charity fashion show. William’s first reaction after watching Kate was, “Wow, she looks hot…” as said by one of William’s friends. They dated for eight years before he proposed to her in October 2010.
They were engaged in October 2010 while on a private holiday in Kenya; William gave Middleton the same engagement ring that his father had given to William’s mother, Diana, Princess of Wales—an 18-carat white gold ring with a 12-carat oval sapphire and 14 round diamonds. It was announced at approximately the same time that, after their marriage, the couple will live on the Isle of Anglesey in Wales, where Prince William is based with the Royal Air Force.
The build up to the wedding and the occasion itself attracted much media attention, with the service broadcast live around the world, and with it being compared and contrasted in many ways to the last high profile BritishRoyal wedding, the1981 marriageof William’s parents,Prince CharlesandLady Diana Spencer.
Much of the attention focused on Middleton’s status as a commoner (i.e. not of Royal blood or a part of thearistocracy), marrying into royalty. Hours before the service, William was granted the titles of theDuke of Cambridge,Earl of Strathearn, andBaron Carrickfergusby the Queen. Upon her marriage, Middleton therefore becameHer Royal Highness Princess William Arthur Philip Louis, Duchess of Cambridge, Countess of Strathearn, Baroness Carrickfergus, but is not styled as ‘Princess Catherine’.
Prince William is the elder son of Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, and Diana, Princess of Wales, and grandson of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. As such, he is second, behind his father, in the line of succession to the throne in 16 independent states known as the Commonwealth. William was educated at Ludgrove School, Eton College, and the University of St Andrews, after which he was commissioned from Sandhurst in the Blues and Royals regiment of the Household Cavalry. He later transferred to the Air Force and went on to become a full time pilot with the Search and Rescue Force.
Catherine “Kate” Middleton is the eldest of three children born to Michael and Carole Middleton. She was educated at St Andrew’s School in Pangbourne, Marlborough College, and the University of St Andrews. After graduating, she worked in retail and then as an accessories buyer/catalogue photographer at her parents’ business. She is primarily of English descent, but with a few distant Scottish and French Huguenot ancestors. Her paternal family came from Leeds, West Yorkshire, while her mother’s maternal family, the Harrisons, were working-class labourers and miners from County.
As William was not the immediate heir to the throne, the wedding was not a full state occasion, with many details left to the couple themselves to decide, such as much of the the guest list of about 1,900. The list of celebrity guests was headed by British Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife Samantha, Well known Footballer David and his wife Victoria Beckham, Olympic swimming star Ian Thorpe, Sir Elton John and partner David Furnish as well as Guy Ritchie, film-maker and former partner of singer Madonna. Foreign royalty included everyone from the Sultan of Brunei and the King and Queen of Norway to King Constantine, the former sovereign of Greece, and his wife Queen Anne-Marie.
It was however a public holiday in Britain, and featured many ceremonial aspects including use of the state carriages and roles for the Foot Guards and Household Cavalry. It was attended by most of the British Royal Family as well as many foreign royals and diplomats, as well as the couple’s chosen personal guests.
Middleton wore a white dress with a 270 centimeters (110 in) train, by English designer Sarah Burton, as well as a tiara lent to her by the Queen.
Catherine Middleton and Pippa Middleton
William, commissioned as a Royal Navy Lieutenant, Army Captain and Air Force Flight Lieutenant, chose instead to wear the uniform of his honorary rank of Colonel of the Regiment, Irish Guards.
William’s best man was his brother, Prince Harry, while the bride’s sister Pippa acted as her maid of honour.
In a break with royal tradition, the groom had a best man—his brother, Prince Harry—rather than a supporter, while the bride has chose her sister, Pippa, as maid of honour. The couple also had four cute girls as bridesmaids and two page boys.
The Dean of Westminster officiated most of the service, with the Archbishop of Canterbury conducting the marriage ceremony itself and the Bishop of London giving the sermon. A reading was also given by the bride’s brother, James.
The Royal Wedding Cake
The wedding cake had a strong British floral theme, using elements of the Joseph Lambeth technique. It was a multi-tiered traditional fruit cake decorated with cream and white icing. The Lambeth technique is based on a style of decorating that was popular in England where chefs and decorators would use a lot of intricate piping to create 3-D scrollwork, leaves, flowers, and other decoration. The cake designer Fiona Cairns was chosen in February 2011 to create the wedding cake. Furthermore, McVitie’s will create a special cake from chocolate biscuit for the reception at Buckingham Palace. The chocolate biscuit cake will be made from a Royal Family recipe and was specially requested by Prince William.
The wedding was widely broadcasted on television, internet and radio. It is been estimated that the coverage was watched by two billion people worldwide. Various Media Channels in different parts of the World including the ITV BBC and CNN covered the ceremony and associated events live from the Marriage Venue. The royal wedding was also streamed live online on Youtube via The Royal Channel.
After the ceremony, the newly married couple traveled in procession to Buckingham Palace for the traditional appearance on the balcony and a fly past, before crowds assembled in The Mall.
And Some Memorable Snaps of the Royal Wedding…
We wish all the very best to the newly wed couple.