UK News

Insights from the UK and beyond

from Fan Fare:

Parents cashing in on royal couple?

Royals8.jpgThe parents of Prince William and Kate Middleton have not missed the marketing opportunity their children's upcoming royal wedding presents.

Middleton's family, which runs a party paraphernalia company called Party Pieces, has begun stocking regal trivia cards with crowns to scratch off and retailing at 3.99 pounds for a pack of 10. The cards, added to a range of products on offer for street parties -- expected to be held up and down the country on the day of the wedding -- have left the Middletons open to criticism that they are tastelessly cashing in on their daughter's marriage to the second in line to the throne.

Now Prince William's father Charles has hit the headlines after a jigsaw puzzle featuring a photograph of the young couple went on sale at the shop of his Gloucestershire home Highgrove. The wooden set is priced at 29.95 pounds, and while other wedding-related gifts are already available at the store, the Daily Mail argues that the puzzle "stands out from a range of more demure wedding souvenirs."

A spokeswoman for the prince said such items went on sale "in response to customer demand", and pointed out that all profits from the sales go to charity.

from Royal Wedding Diary:

Leaks and blushes for the royal family

Royals6.jpgIt was not the ideal week for the royal family as it gears up for the big wedding on April 29.

While media coverage of the upcoming nuptials of Prince William and fiancee Kate Middleton has been gushing generally, there was embarrassment by association this week as the newspapers laid into William's uncle Prince Andrew for his friendship with New York financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was jailed in 2008 for child sex offences.

from Fan Fare:

What’s wrong with a royal knees up?

BRITAIN-WILLIAM/I'm looking forward to the April 29th wedding of Prince William to his long-term girlfriend Kate Middleton as a chance to celebrate some of the good things about Britain.

People on my street and the street next to it are considering clubbing together for a street party on one or the other, my seven-year-old is learning a little bit about the political make-up of the country where he was born and a Friday off work in spring in a country that's pretty miserly with the public holidays can't be too bad of a thing.

from Fan Fare:

May one moan about the royal wedding?

Royals1.jpgI may be in Berlin covering the film festival, but I'm keeping half an eye on the press coverage of the royal wedding. Needless to say there is an awful lot of it, and some of the stories appear to be as much fiction as fact, if not more so. The tone is almost entirely positive, with commentators glowing about the young royal couple, her style, his grace, how good it all is for the country, economy, morale, soul -- oh you get the gist.

Now there is not necessarily anything wrong with being positive -- after all, we are talking about a couple of 20-somethings about to embark on a big adventure (marriage) and we should wish them well.

Best of Britain: Duos

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In honor of the announcement of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s upcoming engagement, this week’s Best of Britain is all about duos, whether it’s the big WBA heavyweight fight in Manchester over the weekend, a polar bear’s new companion at the Highland Wildlife Park, or just a couple looking out on the London skyline.

Also included are photos of judges at the World Scotch Pie Championship, people viewing an art exhibition on postcards and an Australian rugby player losing the ball during a friendly match at Twickenham.

Katie Nicholl on when to expect a royal engagement

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Rumours sparked in a blog post written by journalist Tina Brown that a royal engagement would be announced on June 3 or 4,  fizzled by the end of last week.

Royal watchers have long anticipated that Prince William, elder son of heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana, will marry Kate Middleton whom he met at university. Prince William is currently training to be a search and rescue Pilot with the Royal Air Force

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