It can’t be very often that I have the same thought as Prince William, or indeed his fiance Kate Middleton. But after today’s visit to Darwen in northern England I’m sure there was at least one point, as the rain bounced off the pavement, that we were all thinking the same thing; I hope the weather is better than this on the 29th!
It was billed as the couples last public engagement before the big day and myself and Reuters colleague Darren Staples had arrived at our separate venues early in the morning to set up and claim our positions.
DARWEN, England (Reuters) – A large crowd of well-wishers braved a downpour in Lancashire on Monday to cheer Prince William and Kate Middleton as they took part in their final official engagement before their wedding.
The trip was expected to be one of the last occasions that William, second in line to the throne, and Middleton were seen in public before April 29th when they marry at Westminster Abbey.
With a month to go before the big day the British media is revving up its engine and increasing the output of wedding related stories. The head chef and household staff at Buckingham house have been filmed preparing food and readying carriages and companies making souvenirs ranging from plates and mugs to beer and sweets have been splashed across the evening news and morning papers.
In a recent interview given by the Prince he admitted to feeling a bit nervous ahead of the big day and even suffered from a mild bout of ‘knee-knocking’ at a recent wedding rehearsal.
RAF VALLEY, Wales (Reuters) – Prince William has admitted to feeling nervous and daunted as he looks forward to his wedding to Kate Middleton in four weeks’ time.
However, William, son of heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana, said he had managed to “outfox the media” and have a stag party away from the prying eyes of the press.
Prince William and Kate Middleton completed the final leg of their pre-wedding warm up tour of the United Kingdom by flying into Northern Ireland and carrying out a day of engagements in and around Belfast.
Earlier visits to England, Wales and Scotland by the couple meant a trip across the Irish Sea was inevitable before the big day, but the region’s troubled past and heightened security level meant the royal whistle stop tour was unveiled to the press with much less notice than the earlier visits.
It’s the wedding of the year, well unless you believe all the hype in which case its the wedding of the decade, if not the millennium!
Whatever you believe, the rapidly approaching marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton is going to be huge. The global interest in the British royal family, and the two young princes in particular, is massive, although not quite at the dizzying heights of Diana and Fergie in the 80’s yet. But I’d be willing to wager it will be a close run thing by the end of the year, especially if yesterday was any indication.
When people ask me what I do for a living, or they hear tales from my wife about me being away at the Olympics or shooting football or golf or a Papal visit somewhere, the usual response is to tell me how glamorous my job is, rubbing shoulders with all these famous sporting and political icons and how lucky I am to get to attend all these events and call it work!
Granted, I am incredibly lucky to have an office that regularly includes Premier League football grounds and other major sporting events, but glamorous……not a word I would often use, and last night was a perfect case in point.
I’d been looking forward to it for weeks, the flights were booked, passes applied for and I’d even had my suit dry cleaned especially. One of the reasons I became a press photographer and a big factor in why you aspire to work for Reuters is to shoot major figures and stories, both in the world of news and sport, around the globe. Despite ticking off various world leaders, sporting greats, world cups and Olympics, I’d never photographed a Pope.
Pope Benedict XVI nods off during a mass at the Granaries in Floriana April 18, 2010. REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi
MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) – Police arrested 48 men during skirmishes between a far-right group and opponents in the northern English city of Manchester on Saturday.
Supporters of the English Defense League, a new group which stages street protests against what it terms “radical Islam,” clashed with anti-racism campaigners from Unite Against Fascism.