Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex’s wedding ‘refusal’: ‘Not public property’

Prince Edward and Sophie to face ‘issues’ on tour says expert

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The Queen’s third son, Prince Edward, and his wife, Sophie Wessex, are to embark on the latest royal tour next week. The Wessexes will travel to the Caribbean on a royal visit from April 22 to 28. They will visit Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, St Lucia and St Vincent, and the Grenadines to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee and drum up support for the monarchy.

Despite the mixed reception the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge received on their own recent tour to the Caribbean, Edward and Sophie remain set on their upcoming tour.

The couple have established themselves as a formidable force within the Royal Family, proving an ever-reliable presence at royal events.

Channel 5’s recent documentary ‘Edward and Sophie: The Reluctant Royals’ explored their growth from a couple pursuing private careers to two of the most reliable full-time working royals.

The documentary looked at the couple’s wedding, and how they stayed true to form by keeping certain aspects of their life away from the cameras.

Dickie Arbiter, former royal press secretary, said: “There was a lot of media disappointment when the bride and groom came out of St George’s Chapel.

“[They] stood on the top of the steps outside, and they didn’t kiss.”

Ayesha Hazarika, royal expert and commentator, told the documentary: “I think they decided, ‘You know what, we’re going to actually not give the press what they want and we’re also going to send a signal that we are not 100 percent public property.

“‘We do want to have some privacy.’”

Edward and Sophie’s wedding was labelled the “people’s wedding” by a number of media outlets at the time after they picked 8,000 people at random into the castle grounds.

Around 550 guests were in attendance, with a reported 200 million watching on TV around the world.

The documentary’s narrator explained Edward and Sophie tried to make their big day a more intimate affair than other royal weddings, and had similarities to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding decades later.

Ms Hazarika said: “There was still obviously a lot of pomp and ceremony and all the key figures from the Royal Family were there.

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“It wasn’t like it was just down the local church.

“But it just did have a feel that it was a little more low key, which, I think, is quite fitting because it sort of set the tone for how they have ended up conducting their future life.”

After the marriage ceremony, guests were gathered at the Waterloo Chamber and the Grand Reception Room, where they were served canapes.

A buffet-style dinner was later served.

As the wedding took place in the afternoon, and the reception in the evening, Edward and Sophie were reportedly wary that guests may wish to change before letting their hair down in the evening.

Angela Levin, royal expert and biographer, told the documentary that the Queen Mother took objection to one request.

She said: “The wedding took place in the afternoon, and Sophie and Edward didn’t want to give people the problem of changing their clothes from their ceremony for the evening celebrations.

“And she said, ‘Please, there’s no need to wear hats. Well the Queen Mother wasn’t going to be told what to do. She loved wearing hats.”

Edward and Sophie became the Earl and Countess of Wessex, a county that many pointed out no longer exists, and hasn’t done for almost 1100 years.

Ingrid Seward, author of more than a dozen royal books, said the Queen had suggested Edward become Duke of Cambridge — the city where he went to university.

Edward, however, had other ideas. Mr Seward said: “He said ‘No, no, no. I’d like to be Earl of Wessex.”

Richard Kay, the Daily Mail’s editor-at-large, added that Edward’s request had come from his interest in films and theatre.

He said: “There was a character in that great film Shakespeare in Love called ‘Lord Wessex’.”

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