After a decade of marriage and three children, they look as happy as ever.
To mark their tenth anniversary tomorrow, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have released two stunning new portraits taken this week at Kensington Palace.
Surprisingly, the couple – who tend to play it safe when it comes to official pictures – have turned to celebrity snapper Chris Floyd, best known for his Britpop portraits of the 1990s. His subjects have included Oasis, Supergrass and The Verve, as well as Sir Paul McCartney, David Bowie and artist David Hockney.
The photographs are glamorous and glossy, but nonetheless natural. Kate and William are pictured standing in the courtyard at their official London residence as well as sitting in the garden. In each, it is clear the couple have an easy, affectionate confidence with each other.
A youthful Kate, 39, is wearing a bohemian-style blue patterned Avery wrap dress by Ghost costing £195. William, 38, is smart casual in a blue jumper and shirt. The duchess’s hair is styled into waves instead of the more formal dark curls she favoured early in their marriage – William would be the first to admit, jokingly, he simply has noticeably less hair.
They are happy to be snapped holding hands – with Princess Diana’s famous sapphire and diamond engagement ring gleaming on Kate’s finger.
In one of the new portraits of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, taken at Kensington Palace this week to mark their 10th wedding anniversary, Diana, Princess of Wales’s famous sapphire and diamond engagement ring can be seen gleaming on Kate’s finger (pictured)
Tender moment: Kate and William hold hands in a new image captured in the garden at Kensington Palace. Pictured, Kate opted for a £195 bohemian-style blue patterned wrap dress by Ghost, while Prince William donned a familiar blue jumper and shirt
It may be their tenth anniversary but it is likely the couple will be doing the school run as normal today.
Aides say they insist their children – Prince George, seven, Princess Charlotte, who turns six on Sunday, and Prince Louis, three – come first.
Sources say William is ‘extremely proud’ of the way his wife has adapted to the goldfish bowl of royal life.
‘She’s made the job her own and given him a beautiful family,’ a royal insider said. ‘They are a real team now.’
On 29 April 2011, Kate walked down the aisle at Westminster Abbey in a service that was performed by the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams.
The couple said ‘I do’ in front of 2,000 guests and were watched by 36.7 million people who tuned in around the world.
William proposed during a holiday in Kenya in October 2010 after asking Kate’s father for his daughter’s hand following a marathon eight-year courtship. Pictured, in her engagement pictures with Prince William, taken on 16 November 2010
Fairytale: A decade on from Prince William and Kate Middleton’s big day on April 29th 2011, the couple look back on a day that wouldn’t have been allowed to happen under current restrictions. Kate, then 29, wore a £250,000 gown by Alexander McQueen
More poignant since the loss of Prince Philip: the couple’s wedding photo, with both sides of their families present, taken by Hugo Burnand in the throne room at Buckingham Palace
That kiss! Prince William and Kate Middleton shared a very public kissing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace following their wedding at Westminster Abbey
In 2013, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge beamed in photographs leaving the Lindo Wing of St Mary’s Hospital in London, as they introduced their newborn son, Prince George
In 2015, the couple once again beamed outside of the Lindo Wing of St Mary’s Hospital in London, following the birth of their daughter Princess Charlotte (left) and right, after the birth of Prince Louis in April 2018
Kate’s ‘something new, borrowed and blue’
On her wedding day, Kate’s ‘something new’ was her earrings – diamond-set oak leaves with a pear-shaped drop and a diamond acorn, a gift from her parents based on the family’s new coat of arms.
Each member of the Middleton family had a piece of jewellery created for them for the occasion, and Kate’s mother, Carole, was responsible for co-designing the earrings with bespoke jewellers Robinson Pelham.
The ‘borrowed’ was the 1936 diamond Cartier Halo tiara from the Queen, and the bride had an unseen piece of blue ribbon sewn into the dress’s lining to satisfy tradition.
Kate, then 29, wore a £250,000 gown by Alexander McQueen, which included a lace bodice hand-stitched by the world’s best seamstresses at the Royal School of Needlework.
The most iconic moment of the couple’s wedding day came perhaps when they shared their first kiss as a married couple on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, much to the delight of cheering onlookers outside the Palace gates and beyond.
Moments earlier, stepping on to the balcony, Kate had appeared to gasp ‘Oh my’ as she caught sight of the thousands of people who’d streamed into the public spaces around Buckingham Palace to share in the joy of the newlyweds.
And hours before that, she’d heard the same crowds drum up the loud chant ‘We want Kate, we want Kate’ in the moments before the bride had arrived at Westminster Abbey.
There was pomp and ceremony aplenty on that extraordinary day… but some of the more unexpected moments became some of the most memorable.
The sight of the Duke of Cambridge’s then three-year-old goddaughter Grace Van Cutsem clapping her hands over her ears to escape the noise of the cheering and whooping outside Buckingham Palace saw her win column inches galore in global newspapers.
Six children were lucky enough to be picked to be bridesmaids and pageboys, and they were largely the epitome of good behaviour – until the big kiss on the balcony, at least.
Grace – who is the daughter of the couple’s friend Hugh van Cutsem – is now 13 and has remained out of the public eye since stealing the limelight almost ten years ago.
Other highlights included sister-of-the-bride Pippa Middleton’s show-stealing entrance to Westminster Abbey, which later saw the now mother-of-two quickly dubbed ‘Her Royal Hotness’.
Kate’s sibling did have quite a task on her hands though, the bridal train measured two metres.
The sight of Prince William driving his new bride from Buckingham Palace to Clarence House in an open top vintage blue Aston Martin DB6 MkII, decorated with love heart balloons and a ‘just wed’ number plate, was another moment fondly etched in history.
Tootle pip! The happy couple pictured leaving for Clarence House in William’s royal blue vintage Volante car festooned with balloons and a ‘Just wed’ numberplate
Hard to believe: Crowds gathered all day long on the Mall outside Buckingham Palace on the couple’s wedding day, waving union jacks and cheering as the newlyweds appeared on the balcony
Love train: Kate Middleton arriving at Westminster Abbey with her father Michael and sister Pippa, offering the crowd a first glimpse of her beautiful designer gown, which included a bodice hand-stitched by the world’s best seamstresses at the Royal School of Needlework
The car, which has been updated to run on eco-friendly fuel, was lent to William by Prince Charles, who was gifted the now 51-year-old Aston Martin at his 21st birthday party.
Earlier in the day, the couple had arrived at Buckingham Palace from Westminster Abbey in a 1902 state Landau that was used by Charles and Diana on their wedding day 30 years ago.
Then there was the couple’s cake, eight tiers of temptation that featured 900 individually iced flowers and was made by Fiona Cairns.
The stunning creation had 17 different flower designs, all with their own individual meaning, including a daffodil representing Wales and new beginnings.
Now teenagers, the page boys and flower girls seen arriving at the wedding in 2011. Pictured: Tom Pettifer laughs as he arrives with Master William Lowther-Pinkerton, Lady Louise Windsor and Margarita Armstrong-Jones
Pippa Middleton stole more than a few headlines after she helped her older sister adjust the train on her Alexander McQueen gown. Pippa wore a stunning white cowl-neck dress with cap sleeves for Kate’s big day
Pippa Middleton gently holds the hands of Kate’s flower girls – including characterful Grace Van Cutsem, left, as they arrive at Westminster Abbey
Happier times: Prince Harry waves alongside Lady Louise Windsor and Pageboy Tom Pettifer as they arrive at Westminster Abbey
Eight tiers of temptation: Royal baker Fiona Cairns decorated the royal wedding cake with individual
The cake was actually made from 17 individual fruit cakes – 12 of which formed the base. A garland design around the middle matched the decorations in the Picture Gallery in Buckingham Palace.
Guests were also able to enjoy a multi-tiered chocolate biscuit cake at the request of Prince William. The newlyweds commissioned McVities to craft the creation as an alternative to the official wedding cake. It was decorated with white chocolate water lilies and milk chocolate leaves.
As a nation emerging from lockdown after lockdown during the pandemic, some of the most striking images to reflect on are of the masses mingling on the Mall.
London was a blanket of red, white and blue as a million well-wishers came together to catch a glimpse of this very public wedding.
Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex’s daughter Lady Louise Windsor was just seven when she made up part of Kate’s troupe which accompanied her down the aisle. Pictured, arriving at Westminster Abbey
Bridesmaid Margarita Armstrong-Jones and page boy Tom Pettifer wave as they arrive to attend the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011 in London
Eliza – the granddaughter of Prince William’s stepmother Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall – was just three when she took on the role of flower girl in front of the nation at the royal wedding (pictured)
William, the son of Prince William and Kate’s former aide, Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, was ten at the time of the wedding and is now 17. Pictured, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with their page boys and bridesmaids as they prepare to begin their journey by carriage procession to Buckingham Palace
Over to you William! Michael Middleton pictured giving his daughter away at Westminster Abbey…as she went from Catherine Middleton to future Queen Consort of 17 nations
The soon-to-be-newlyweds pictured from above with the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, as they prepared to take their wedding vows
The Queen, the late Prince Philip, Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall with a youthful-looking Prince Harry sat in the front row to watch Kate and William take their vows
William, dressed in full military uniform, and Kate smile as they leave Westminster Abbey man and wife
Waving Union Jacks, the crowds roared with excitement as the couple arrived in their open-top carriage after making the journey from Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace via Horse Guards Parade.
Thousands then waited patiently for that kiss – and were then given a surprise second. The moment was caught on giant screens across London in Hyde Park, Trafalgar Square and at many more gardens, squares and street parties. across the UK, and indeed the world.
At the time, Westminster City Council said the Royal wedding was the capital’s largest ever event. Paul Reid, head of operations, said he estimated nearly a million people were on the streets of London.
Despite the huge crowds police made just 52 arrests among the crowd in a day of unique goodwill.
Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with Prince George and Princess Charlotte pushed to her christening at the Church of St Mary Magdalene in Sandringham, Norfolk on 5 July 2015
William has remained a doting father and even appeared to coordinate his outfit with George at a children’s party for military families in Canada, in 2016
Kate looked adoringly at Charlotte during a children’s party for Military families during the Royal Tour of Canada in 2016
Prince Charlotte was joined by her brother Prince George on her first day at school in London on 5 September 2019
William proposed during a holiday in Kenya in October 2010 after asking Kate’s father for his daughter’s hand following a marathon eight-year courtship.
Kate and William first met at St Andrews University where they were both studying history of art and lived close to each other in the halls of residence during their first year.
It was at a charity fashion show in March 2002, when Kate modelled a sheer black lace dress, that she was said to have first turned the Prince’s head.
They moved in together with friends in 2002 but are not thought to have become a proper item until around Christmas 2003.
Their romance was exposed on a skiing holiday in Klosters in 2004 but William famously proclaimed: ‘I don’t want to get married until I’m at least 28 or maybe 30’ – setting the stage for a very long wait.
They split up in April 2007 as William became increasingly involved in his career in the Armed Forces but were secretly united within weeks.
Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are joined by their children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis as they join clap for NHS carers as part of the BBC Children In Need and Comic Relief ‘Big Night In at London on April 23, 2020 in London
Prince William, Kate Middleton and their children attend a special pantomime performance at London’s Palladium Theatre, hosted by The National Lottery, to thank key workers and their families for their efforts throughout the pandemic on 11 December 2020
WEDDING DAY STATS: 10,000 CANAPES, 5,000 POLICE OFFICERS, and TWO BILLION TV VIEWERS
Prince Charles’ bioethanol 41-year-old Aston Martin runs entirely on wine. It was converted in 2008
The cake contained 17 different types of flower made from sugar paste, each one picked by Kate for their meaning or symbolism
The cake had 900 sugar paste flowers in total
An estimated one million people lined the streets – and two billion were watching around the globe
10,000 canapes were prepared by 21 chefs for the Buckingham Palace reception
Wedding mentioned 268,777 times on Facebook during the ceremony
More than 5,000 police officers were on duty to ensure event ran like clockwork
1902state Landau that carried William and Catherine to Buckingham Palace for the reception was used by Charles and Diana on their wedding day 30 years ago
10,000 people were crammed into Trafalgar Square to watch the ceremony on a big screen
More than 1,300 armed forces personnel played a role in the wedding
Kate Middleton’s bridal train measured two metres and 70cm
Ahuge surge in electricity demand marked the end of television coverage of Kate and William’s procession to Buckingham Palace. The 2,400 MW boost as cameras switched back to television studios at 12.40pm was equivalent to nearly one million kettles being boiled at once
Thetop three surges in demand are: 2,800 MW at the end of the penalty shoot-out for England’s World Cup semi-final against West Germany in 1990; 2,600 MW after a 1984 episode of The Thornbirds; and 2,570 MW surge at half-time during England’s semi-final match against Brazil in the 2002 World Cup.
‘OK? Look at me… Let’s do it!’ Ten years ago, 2.4billion watched William and Kate tie the knot. Now, in sublime detail, master storyteller JONATHAN MAYO retells each glorious moment – and the words that sparked THAT kiss
By Jonathan Mayo for the Daily Mail
They finally met as students at St Andrews University and dated for eight years, splitting up briefly in 2007. Then in October 2010, on holiday in Kenya, they became engaged.
William had brought with him in his rucksack his mother’s engagement ring. His girlfriend was ‘Waity Katie’ no more. When the date for the wedding was set, William told his team he wanted the day to be ‘as enjoyable as possible, for as many people as possible’.
Magic moments: The first kiss on the balcony. Legend has it that, when she was at school, young Kate Middleton had a picture of Prince William on her dormitory wall
Friday, April 29, 2011
Catherine Elizabeth Middleton is waking up in her £5,000-a-night suite in the exclusive Goring Hotel, close to Buckingham Palace. This is her last day as a commoner. The Middletons have booked all of the Goring’s 69 rooms for family and friends.
The wedding cost is being split between the Queen, Prince Charles and the Middletons. Policing is being paid for by the taxpayer. There is speculation that the wedding has cost the Middleton family alone £250,000.
Thousands of people from all over the world are standing on the processional route between the Palace and Westminster Abbey. Some have slept overnight in nearby parks. So far, the rain that was forecast has held off. Despite the early hour, well-wishers are loudly singing Rule Britannia and drinking champagne.
There are 5,000 police and troops on duty; in the days before the wedding, the Met has rounded up scores of potential troublemakers, including a group of anarchists who had planned to behead effigies of the Royal Family with a mock guillotine.
Maid of Honour Pippa helps her sister to the Abbey at the Royal Wedding of Prince William of Wales to Kate Middleton on April 29, 201
The Government has declared today a public holiday, and thousands of street parties are being set up nationwide. Some pubs are selling ‘Kiss Me Kate’ ale and ‘Fashionably Kate’ cocktails.
Not all employers have given their workforce the day off. Brendan Barber, general secretary of the Trades Union Congress, says: ‘A significant minority of tight-fisted companies have decided to ignore the national mood. They are insisting on keeping staff chained to their desks while everyone else is enjoying the Bank Holiday.’
Tesco has said that its staff who work today will be given up to triple pay.
Princes William and Harry have spent the night at Clarence House. William hasn’t had much sleep because of the noise outside. The previous evening, the brothers popped out to talk to the crowds on the Mall; William gave his police detail just five minutes’ warning of their impromptu walkabout.
To one family member, William admitted that he was ‘terrified of fluffing his lines’. He asked another: ‘Will you wave? I’ll wave back.’
William and Kate have said to the public, friends and family that instead of wedding presents, they would like a donation made to one of 26 small charities. More than £1 million has already been raised so far.
WhilE her brother James is having breakfast at Clarence House with William and Harry, Kate is in her bedroom at the Goring Hotel, having her hair done by the stylist Richard Ward. She tells him his only job is to ensure that ‘by the time I get to the altar, William must be able to recognise me!’
It will take three hours to get her hair properly styled. Ward later describes today as ‘the hair gig of the century’.
The crowd of thousands of people waving British flags as they wait for Britain’s Prince William and his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, to appear at the balcony of Buckingham Palace
The doors of Westminster Abbey are opened for the congregation to take their places. The first guest list drawn up by the Lord Chamberlain had 777 names on it, mostly dignitaries and officials of whom William and Kate had never heard. William recalled: ‘They said: ‘These are the people we should invite.’ I looked at it in absolute horror and said: ‘I think we should start again.’ ‘
William rang the Queen for advice: ‘I asked ‘Do we need to be doing this?’ and she said ‘No. Start with your friends first and go from there.’ She made the point that there are certain times when you have to strike the right balance.’
In fact, William and the Queen have either met in person or spoken on the phone (sometimes on the monarch’s mobile) every day in the run-up to the wedding.
Among the guests arriving at the Abbey, alongside celebrities such as Elton John and Rowan Atkinson, are people from Kate’s home village of Bucklebury, including the butcher, the pub landlord and the postman.
David Beckham arrives with his pregnant wife Victoria. The footballer is wearing his OBE on the wrong side of his Ralph Lauren morning suit (it should be worn on the left).
London Mayor Boris Johnson arrives in wedding tails that he claims he has hired from the High Street store Moss Bros. His wife Marina Wheeler, who is half-Indian, is wearing a traditional shalwar kameez.
More than a million people are now on the streets of Central London, and in some places the pavements are 20 deep. William and Harry arrive at the Abbey, having paused briefly at the Cenotaph to pay their respects to their fallen comrades.
The groom is in the uniform of a Colonel of the Irish Guards and his best man in the uniform of a captain of the Blues and Royals. Harry’s uniform has a pocket specially sewn into it for the ring.
William had wanted to choose what he wore on his wedding day, but the Queen insisted he should marry in his Irish Guards uniform. ‘You don’t always get what you want [with the Queen], put it that way!’ he later joked.
However, that day his grandmother has made him His Royal Highness the Duke of Cambridge, Earl of Strathearn and Baron Carrickfergus.
The princes make their way down the aisle and towards the Chapel of St Edmund, where traditionally the groom waits for his bride to arrive.
Kate’s mother Carole steps out of a limousine with her son James. She is under particular scrutiny. The granddaughter of a miner, she once worked as ground staff for British Airways and has had many months of jibes about her humble beginnings. Carole is wearing a pale blue crêpe coatdress by one of Princess Diana’s favourite designers, Catherine Walker.
Carole’s brother Gary, the family black sheep, who lives in a house in Spain called ‘La Maison de Bang Bang’, slips into the Abbey unobserved by the television cameras.
Eagle-eyed TV viewers spot that David Beckham is now wearing his OBE on the correct side of his jacket.
Next to arrive are Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie. All eyes are on Beatrice’s flamboyant tall, pale pink Philip Treacy hat. ‘Is that an octopus on her head, or a pair of antlers?’ asked the Daily Mail the next day.
In May 2011, Beatrice sells the hat for £80,000 and gives the money to charity.
Fashion parade: Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice at the Royal Wedding in 2011
Kate emerges from the Goring Hotel and gets into a Rolls-Royce. The world has a brief glimpse of the wedding dress, designed by Sarah Burton of the fashion house Alexander McQueen.
It is made of satin and lace, with a 9ft train and a veil of ivory silk tulle, held in place by a tiara loaned to Kate by the Queen. On the dress are embroidered the national emblems of the rose, the thistle, the daffodil and the shamrock. Kate’s bouquet contains Sweet William, lily of the valley, ivy and a stem from a myrtle planted by Queen Victoria in 1845.
Michael Middleton gets into the car after his daughter and carefully arranges the train.
In a marquee in Bucklebury, a crowd is watching the TV coverage on a big screen. A woman says: ‘Oh my God! Oh my God! Look at her! She’s so slim and beautiful, she’s like a princess!’
‘She is a princess, you idiot,’ someone else in the throng replies.
Pippa Middleton, Maid of Honour, the bridesmaids and page boys get out of their car by the West Door of the Abbey. The bridesmaids are all wearing ballerina-length white frocks with pale gold silk sashes, tied at the back with a bow. The pageboys, dressed in the Regency-style red tunic of a Foot Guards officer, echo William’s Irish Guards attire. Pippa is wearing a slim ivory dress, also designed by Sarah Burton. Her bottom immediately inspires tribute sites on Facebook.
A minute late, the bride arrives at Westminster Abbey. Pippa helps her sister out of the car and takes hold of the train. A relaxed Kate waves to the crowd and then takes her father’s hand. Michael Middleton is looking distinctly nervous.
As Parry’s Coronation Anthem ‘I Was Glad’ plays, the bride walks down the aisle between a ‘living avenue’ of eight 25ft-high trees: six field maples and two hornbeams. The maples are chosen because they symbolise humility and the hornbeams resilience. They will later be replanted at Prince Charles’s holiday house in Wales.
The Abbey is also decorated with almost 30,000 flowers. Harry turns and looks back down the aisle, then whispers something into his brother’s ear and they both laugh. Harry had said to the Press a few days ago, ‘It’s great that she’s now becoming part of the family. I always wished for a sister and now I have one.’
Kate reaches William’s side. ‘You look beautiful, babe,’ he says, then leans over to joke to his soon-to-be father-in-law: ‘Just a small family affair . . .’
The crowds outside the Abbey sing along to the hymns, which are William and Kate’s favourites. The service is led by Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and as he says ‘Catherine Elizabeth, wilt thou have this man to be thy wedded husband, to live together according to God’s law in the holy estate of Matrimony?’ Kate looks nervous for the first time.
William pushes a band of Welsh gold on to Kate’s finger. On her other hand, Kate is wearing Princess Diana’s diamond and sapphire engagement ring. William said he chose his mother’s ring ‘because obviously she’s not going to be around to share any of the fun and excitement . . . this was my way of keeping her sort of close to it all’.
When the Archbishop says: ‘I pronounce that they be man and wife together’, the congregation can hear the crowd outside roar. An estimated 2.4 billion are now watching the service around the world on television.
Richard Chartres, the Bishop of London, turns to William and Kate and starts his sermon with a quote from St Catherine of Siena, whose feast day is today: ‘ ‘Be who God meant you to be and you’ll set the world on fire.’ Marriage is intended to be a way in which man and woman help each other to become what God meant each one to be — their deepest and truest selves.’
He ends his sermon by saying: ‘I pray that all of us present, and the many millions watching this ceremony and sharing your joy today, will do everything in our power to support and uphold you in your new life.’ Fourteen years earlier, on the night before Princess Diana’s funeral, the bishop had kept a vigil by her coffin at Kensington Palace.
The service ended, the new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge emerge through the West Door. The crowd cheer and the Abbey bells ring. The couple climb into the 1902 State Landau for the journey to Buckingham Palace, the same carriage Charles and Diana used 30 years before. The Queen turns to the Duke of Edinburgh and says: ‘Well, that was excellent, wasn’t it?’
The Beckhams attending the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in April 2011
As the carriage turns into the Mall, the sun comes out for the first time. Kate says to William: ‘Now are you happy?’
‘Yes! It was a beautiful service. It really was. It was amazing. I’m so proud you’re my wife!’
As they pass the Cenotaph, William salutes the memorial and Kate bows her head. When the couple reach Buckingham Palace, demand for electricity suddenly surges by 2,400 megawatts — the power needed to boil nearly a million kettles. It is the fourth highest power surge of all time, behind the increase that followed England’s semi-final penalty shootout defeat by West Germany in the 1990 World Cup, England’s 2002 World Cup semi-final against Brazil and a 1983 episode of The Thorn Birds.
The guests at Westminster Abbey have now gone and the staff are beginning to clear up. Ben Sheward, a verger at the Abbey, runs back into the building and cartwheels down the nave between the trees. ITV cameras capture this spontaneous display and beam the pictures around the world; Ben becomes an instant international celebrity.
A Westminster Abbey spokesman says: ‘The verger, like all of us, was very pleased the service had gone according to plan, and was expressing his exuberance.’
In the Buckingham Palace Throne Room, the official photographs are being taken by society photographer Hugo Burnand; he has been preparing for three days. His team of six includes his mother Ursy, also a photographer, who is keeping the bridesmaids and page boys happy with bowls of jelly beans.
Hugo Burnand later says: ‘We were very prepared and had done a second-by-second stopwatch dress rehearsal of the entire day. Not only did we have spare parts for every piece of equipment, we also had spares for the spares, so come the day we were more excited than fearful. The atmosphere among our team was more along the lines of ‘Bring it on!’ ‘ His pictures will be edited in the Throne Room and released to the world within hours.
The balcony doors open and William and Kate step forward. ‘Wow!’ Kate exclaims when she sees the crowd below them. Then they are joined by the rest of the Royal Family, the Middletons and the bridesmaids and pageboys. Tens of thousands of people are chanting for the newlyweds to kiss.
William looks at Kate and says: ‘OK? Look at me — let’s do it.’
After they have kissed, he shouts over to his brother, who is standing next to sister of the bride and Maid of Honour Pippa Middleton: ‘Harry! Your go!’ Then William kisses Kate once more.
Meanwhile, three-year-old bridesmaid Grace van Cutsem, William’s goddaughter, covers her ears because of the din of the crowd. The noise only gets louder, though, as the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and then RAF Tornados and Typhoons roar overheard.
William and Kate are having a luncheon reception for 600 people at Buckingham Palace, all of whom had been at the wedding service. An astonishing 10,000 canapes are served during the two-hour occasion, prepared by the Palace’s 21-strong team of kitchen staff. Now she is a duchess, Kate is having to get used to the Palace policemen saluting her, and servants curtseying or bowing their heads.
Around the country, more than 5,500 celebratory street parties are getting under way.
The brothers in the Abbey. William and Harry arrived at the Abbey, having paused briefly at the Cenotaph to pay their respects to their fallen comrades
Prince Charles is making a speech and saying of his new daughter-in-law: ‘We are lucky to have her.’ He recalls William as a teenager playing music loudly in his bedroom for hours on end and his two-fingered response to advice not to slouch.
William then makes a speech praising his new wife and thanking his grandmother for hosting the reception.
The couple cut the eight-tiered wedding cake, which is made from 17 different cakes; it took pastry chef Fiona Cairns and her team two and half days to assemble and a Palace door had to be removed in order to get it safely inside.
‘I hear you’ve been dismantling my house,’ the Queen says to Fiona.
In 2013, the top tier of the wedding cake will be served at Prince George’s christening.
The reception ends and the guests are ushered into the gardens at the rear of the Palace, where the Prince of Wales’s dark blue open-topped Aston Martin Volante is waiting. The car, which the eco-conscious Prince Charles has adapted to run on wine, has been decorated by Prince Harry with balloons and ribbons and a ‘JU5T WED’ number plate.
Kate and her wedding dress with its 9ft train squeeze into the passenger seat and William drives through the delighted crowds the short distance to Clarence House.
A yellow RAF Sea King helicopter flies overhead and dips in salute to the couple. Flight Lieutenant Wales is a fully qualified search and rescue pilot at RAF Valley, on Anglesey.
In Clarence House, Kate and William are taking advantage of a break in the celebrations to relax and watch a replay of their wedding ceremony on television.
At the ballroom in Buckingham Palace, a party is starting for 300 close friends and family. The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh have stayed away to help keep the evening informal. Kate has changed into a floor-length white satin gown, William into black tie.
The guests are being served Welsh seafood, followed by lamb from Prince Charles’s farm at Highgrove and a trio of puddings. Later in the evening, two vans in the Palace quadrangle will serve bacon butties and ice cream to the assembled revellers.
The party is hosted by Prince Charles but Prince Harry, seated next to his on-off girlfriend Chelsy Davy, is the master of ceremonies. Without notes, Harry speaks movingly about their mother, then teases William ‘The Dude’ about his receding hairline and how he used to beat Harry up and fire air rifles at him.
Harry says he loves Kate, ‘The Duchess’, like a sister. Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, whose son Billy was a pageboy, later says Harry was ‘absolutely brilliant, cryingly funny, and held everybody and built everybody up with his speech but still made everybody howl with laughter’. Singer Ellie Goulding and her band are providing the entertainment. Their opening number for William and Kate’s first dance is Elton John’s 1970 hit Your Song.
A DJ finishes his set with the Beatles’ She Loves You and Kate and William get into his cousin David Linley’s open-top yellow Fiat 500.
As a chauffeur drives them around the block and back to Buckingham Palace, the couple stand up and wave to their guests. Their wedding night will be spent in the Palace’s Belgian Suite, where the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh lived in the early part of her reign.
Off in Dad’s Aston. Instead of going on honeymoon, William goes straight back to work for RAF Search And Rescue at Valley
Harry, wearing a black dinner jacket and white dress shirt with three buttons undone, emerges from Buckingham Palace to lead party-goers on to the second venue of the night — the nearby Goring Hotel.
William and Harry hadn’t wanted their friends to speak to the Press as they left the Palace, so they have laid on three coaches to ferry them discreetly to the Goring, where butlers in bowler hats welcome them.
Instead of going on honeymoon, William goes straight back to work for RAF Search And Rescue at Valley.
The hotel the couple had originally wanted in the Seychelles was fully booked and William and Kate were not prepared to ask the mnagement to make room for them and cancel other people’s bookings. ‘There’s no way that we’re going to do that. It could be their honeymoon,’ says William.
THREE QUARTERS OF BRITONS BELIEVE KATE WILL MAKE A GOOD QUEEN – POLL
More than three quarters of Britons believe the Duchess of Cambridge will make a good Queen when the time comes, a new poll shows.
The YouGov survey of 5,055 adults in Great Britain, published on Wednesday, found that 43% thought Kate definitely will make a good Queen – while 33% said she probably will.
This compared to just 3% who said she definitely will not, and 2% who said she probably will not.
The poll comes on the eve of the Duke and Duchess’ 10th wedding anniversary on Thursday.
Kate became a future queen when she married second-in-line William at Westminster Abbey on April 29 2011 after an eight-year relationship.
The pair met while studying at St Andrews University, and 10 years on from their wedding, have three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis.
Women were more likely to think Kate will make a good Queen, with 51% saying she definitely will and 31% that she probably will.
This compared to 35% of men for both answers.
Leavers were also much more likely to think the Duchess will definitely make a good Queen at 57%, compared to 36% of Remainers.
The poll also found that the majority of people did not think it made a difference that Kate was a “commoner”, and did not come from an aristocratic or royal background.
Some 31% of people said it was better that she did not come from an aristocratic or royal background, while 59% said it made no difference.
Only 2% said it was worse that the Duchess did not come from an aristocratic or royal background.