In what is probably the most anticipated Royal Wedding since that of his parents, Prince William will marry Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey on 29th April 2011.
Apart from being a huge step for the couple themselves, the wedding has significant meaning for Britain and the Royal family.
Although the cost of the wedding will far exceed anything the humble commoner could imagine, the event will also attract a vast number of visitors, not just to London but also the UK, bringing a much welcome boost to the UK tourism industry. Memorabilia manufacturers and retailers will also be looking forward to a bumper season, as they commemorate (that’s ‘cash in’ for those of a more cynical bent) on the happy event. Television, media and marketing companies will also be vying over prime advertising opportunities and the chance to claim the best coverage. The nuptials may bring the nation a feel good factor, but they are also a bit of a money spinner.
Lest we are swept away in a tide of commercialism, let’s remember this is a family event and a much awaited one at that. For the Royals it’s a chance to regain some ground in the popularity stakes, as second in line to the throne confirms who will be his queen consort. Whilst the marriage will not change the line of succession, it will perhaps brings new optimism for the monarchy, particularly amongst the detractors of the current first in line to the throne.
With a national holiday declared, hot on the heels of Easter and immediately preceding May Day, a three day week is in prospect – surely even the most cynical will smile about that.