On April 29, 2011, Prince William of England married Catherine Middleton — and the world was invited to the wedding. The last royal ceremony of this magnitude was 30 years before, when Lady Diana married Prince Charles.
Now the couple was the heir to the British throne, the handsome son of Princess Diana and Prince Charles, and a commoner named Kate. ABC called the stylish pair “the couple of the moment.” Romantics everywhere rejoiced that the royal duo, who after a 10-year courtship, married for love. In the early hours of the morning, people tuned in to the ceremony: Yahoo! received one billion page views for the British event.
Millions tune in
On a beautiful sunny day, more than a million people flocked to the streets of London to watch the royal procession. Romantics put aside Britain’s social and economic troubles for the occasion.
The bride wore a stunning white gown designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, a secret Kate managed to keep not just from her beloved, but also from the public. Replicas of the wedding gown were already in the works as Kate walked down the aisle, with designers feverishly working to get copy “Kates” into production for fall brides looking to be a princess for a day.
The two tied the knot in Westminster Abbey, with 1,900 in attendance. The guest list glittered with royalty and celebrity, from the queen herself to David and Victoria Beckham, to heads of state (although no Barack Obama), and to family and friends.
The couple appeared on the same balcony as William’s parents for a postwedding kiss, and then, in a twist all their own, took off from Buckingham Palace in dad’s Aston Martin.
The two did share the spotlight. The world had a close look at William’s dashing younger brother, Harry, and Kate’s younger sister, Pippa Middleton. She memorably attended to her sister’s 9-foot-long train in her own form-fitting McQueen dress. Pippa’s backside caused a social media sensation, and people launched Facebook sites to praise the assets of the still-single sister. Twitter nearly crashed as people speculated about what Harry whispered to Pippa as they followed the newlyweds back down the aisle.
Ordinary domestic bliss
The new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, titles bestowed by the queen to celebrate their nuptials, have settled into rather ordinary domestic bliss in Anglesey, North Wales, near a military base. William serves as a search and rescue pilot for the Royal Air Force — and the extraordinary newlyweds will even live apart for a couple of months when William deploys to the Falkland Islands early next year. When in London, the pair enjoy digs in Kensington Palace.