Just married: Prince Harry, Meghan Markle proclaimed husband and wife: LONDON: Meghan Markle has left her overnight hotel to travel to Windsor Castle, where she will marry Prince Harry.
Just married: Prince Harry, Meghan Markle proclaimed husband and wife
Prince Harry and American actor Meghan Markle were married on Saturday in a much-anticipated ceremony, which supporters hope will help recast the 1,000-year-old monarchy for the 21st century.
The couple, who met on a blind date in 2016 and fell in love in a tent under the stars in Botswana, tied the knot at the 15th-century St George’s Chapel, in a castle that has been home to 39 English monarchs since 1066.
Royal wedding underway
The wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle is currently under way at Windsor Castle.
The Dean of Windsor is conducting the service, which includes two hymns and a performance by the choir of soul classic “Stand by Me”.
Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, is officiating as the couple make their wedding vows.
Prince Harry told the Archbishop of Canterbury he would take Meghan Markle to be his wife at a glittering display of royal pageantry that supporters hope will inject a measure of modern Hollywood glamour into the 1,000-year-old monarchy.
“I will,” Harry answered when asked by Justin Welby if he would take Markle dressed in a flowing white gown created by British designer
Clare Waight Keller – to be his wife, to love her, comfort her, honour her and protect her. The declarations are being followed by a reading and theaddress, delivered by black US bishop Michael Bruce Curry.
The couple then give their vows, exchange rings, “a Welsh Gold ring for Markle and a platinum band for Harry“ before the archbishop proclaims them husband and wife.
Prince Harry arrives at Windsor Castle
Prince Harry arrived at Windsor Castle accompanied by his best man Prince William.
Harry was staying at a hotel with elder brother and best man Prince William, whose daughter Charlotte and son George will be among the bridesmaids and page boys.
Meghan Markle arrives
US actress Meghan Markle also arrived at the church with her mother, Doria Ragland, 61, with whom she spent Friday night at a luxury hotel.
Markle entered the chapel unescorted, with her bridesmaids and page boys.
Markle has 10 bridesmaids and pageboys – including Prince George and Princess Charlotte .
Wearing a dress by British designer Clare Waight Keller, Markle was met by Prince Charles, who walked her down the aisle to Prince Harry.
The tiara worn by Markle is a diamond bandeau lent to her by the Queen, Kensington Palace said.
The Palace also revealed that her veil features flowers from each Commonwealth country.
The hour-long ceremony begins at 05:00pm PST (1100 GMT).
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip have also arrived at the wedding venue.
Celebrities at the royal wedding
Celebrities such as US media mogul Oprah Winfrey, actor George Clooney, his lawyer wife Amal, soccer star David Beckham and his fashion designer wife Victoria mingled inside the walls of the world’s oldest inhabited castle.
Bollywood actor and Markle’s friend Priyanka Chopra has also arrived at the venue of the ceremony.
Actor Edris Elba and singer James Blunt also arrived at the wedding.
The Middleton family, including Pippa and her husband, James Matthews, have also arrived at the royal wedding.
Serena Williams and Sir Elton John also arrived at the wedding.
Prince Harry on his way to Windsor
Prince Harry has departed his hotel with his best man, Prince William.
The hour-long ceremony begins at 05:00pm PST (1100 GMT).
The bride will arrive at the church with her mother, Doria Ragland, 61, with whom she spent Friday night at a luxury hotel.
Harry was staying at another hotel with elder brother and best man Prince William, whose daughter Charlotte and son George will be among the bridesmaids and page boys.
In a walk that will lead her into one of the world’s grandest royal families, nicknamed “the Firm”, Markle will enter the chapel unescorted, with her bridesmaids and page boys.
Minute-by-minute guide to Britain’s royal wedding
Markle, born and raised in Los Angeles, will then walk to the quire, about halfway down the church, and join heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles to proceed to the altar where his son, Harry, waits.
Her own father Thomas Markle, 73, a lighting director for TV soaps and sitcoms, pulled out this week, telling the US celebrity website TMZ he had had heart surgery on Wednesday.
Confusion over his attendance marred the build-up to the wedding, which had been choreographed for months by royal aides, and his name still appears in the order of service.
On Friday, Ragland met Queen Elizabeth, 92, and her husband Prince Philip, 96, who will be among the senior royals in the 600-strong congregation.
The service will be conducted by the Dean of Windsor with Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury and spiritual head of the Anglican Church, overseeing the exchange of vows.
A black US bishop, Michael Bruce Curry, will give the wedding address, while Lady Jane Fellowes, sister of Harry´s late mother Princess Diana, will deliver the reading.
Duke and Duchess of Sussex
Hours before the ceremony, Queen Elizabeth bestowed the title of Duke of Sussex on her grandson, a step that means the American actress, star of the TV drama Suits, will become a duchess when she marries Harry.
Fans gather outside the castle
Under clear skies and glorious sunshine, a military band in scarlet uniforms and bearskin hats entertained thousands of excited fans gathered behind barriers.
Police armed with semi-automatic rifles patrolling streets and watching from rooftops.
“This is a moment when we can all celebrate the rebirth of the royal family,” said Kenny McKinlay, 60, who had come down from Scotland for the wedding.
“It´s a time when all the nation can come together rather than being divided. It’s a day when you can be proud to be British.”
The couple, who met on a blind date in 2016 and fell in love in a tent under the stars in Botswana, will tie the knot at the 15th-century St George’s Chapel, in a castle that has been home to 39 English monarchs since 1066.
More than 100,000 fans are expected to cram the narrow roads of Windsor, about 20 miles west of London.
Visitors had to pass through police search points set up around the castle.
Hundreds of TV crews from around the world have descended on Windsor for the union of Harry, 33, sixth-in-line to the British throne, and Markle, 36, a divorcee whose mother is African-American and father is white.
To some Britons, the wedding embodies a more modern Britain where race or background are no bar to even the most elite and traditional of institutions.
To others, it is an irrelevance or mild distraction from the schism of Brexit, which has deeply divided the United Kingdom; polls suggest that most Britons will not bother tuning in.
Theresa May sends good wishes to couple
Prime Minister Theresa May, who along with other politicians was not invited to the wedding, sent good wishes to the couple, adding: “To all of those joining the national celebration with street parties and other events, have a wonderful day.”
In departures from British royal custom, Harry will wear a ring, while Markle will not vow to obey her husband.
In among traditional hymns, a choir will perform American soul singer Ben E King’s 1960s hit “Stand by me”.
After the ceremony, the newlyweds are expected to greet some of the 1,200 members of the public invited into the castle grounds before starting a carriage procession through Windsor.
Key figures attending the Royal Wedding
The newlyweds are not immediately leaving on honeymoon and will carry out their first official engagement as husband and wife next week.
The British remain broadly supportive of the monarchy, albeit with a sense of mild irony about the pomp and pageantry that accompanies it, though most have deep respect for Queen Elizabeth after her 66 years of service as head of state.
Harry, along with brother William and his wife Kate, are at the forefront of efforts to modernise the monarchy by talking openly about their feelings.
“It is patently obvious – the more you say, the more you can be examined,” said royal historian Hugo Vickers.