Today is the day that hundreds of millions of people world-wide have been waiting for; the marriage of HRH Prince William of Wales and Miss Catherine Middleton. This will be the biggest television event of the twenty first century with around 2 billion people expected to watch. As heir to the throne William represents the future of the Monarchy and there has therefore been more interest in this wedding than in any since the wedding of Charles and Diana in 1981.
This morning the Queen has announced that the newly married couple will be granted the titles their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Earl and Countess of Strathearn, and Baron and Lady Carrickfergus.
As tens of thousands line the route of the Royal procession to Westminster Abbey, millions more will be switching on to watch on television. As a proud Royalist I will be watching the build up to the event as well as the wedding itself at 11.00am.
The armed forces will be playing a major role. William is currently serving as a pilot in the RAF and one surprise is that he is reported to have chosen to be married in the red uniform of the Irish Guards of which he was recently made honorary Colonel. Harry is reported to be wearing the blue tunic of the “Blues and Royals” of the Household Division.
The RAF will be playing an important part. Colleagues of mine from the Queen’s Colour Squadron of the RAF will be lining sections of the route, musicians from the Central Band of the RAF will be playing a specially composed fanfare after the signing of the marriage register. It is called “Valiant and Brave” and was composed by my colleague Wing Commander Duncan Stubbs. 32 (The Royal) Squadron will also be involved and there will be an RAF flypast over Buckingham Palace as the Royal couple appear for the now traditional kiss.
It has been good to see the enthusiasm with which amost the whole world has waited for this day and great to learn that republicanism in Australia has been on the wane recently. The Royal family is the glue which binds the British Commonwealth and the many nations of which the Queen remains Head of State. As the cameras and reporters pass down the Mall this morning is great to see people from Canada, Australia, New Zealand and also the USA who have travelled such long distances to be at the wedding. Long may republicans remain a small and unimportant minority in this country!
I wish William and Catherine a long, happy and successful life together.