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Watching the Royal wedding with the crowds at Windsor

PUBLISHED: 14:38 20 May 2018 | UPDATED: 14:38 20 May 2018

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ride in an Ascot Landau  after their wedding ceremony Picture: Odd Anderson/PA Wire

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ride in an Ascot Landau after their wedding ceremony Picture: Odd Anderson/PA Wire

The lure of a Royal wedding grabs the attention of millions of people around the world like almost no other event.

Windsor and Eton Central railway station was renamed for the occasion. Picture: ArchantWindsor and Eton Central railway station was renamed for the occasion. Picture: Archant

And this year’s marriage of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle was no exception, as thousands of well-wishers descended on the small market town of Windsor to be part of the big day.

Travelling on a chilly, foggy morning to London, the day started eerily quiet, even once arriving into the capital at King’s Cross there were no clues as to what the day may hold.

But the party began in Paddington, where the Royal wedding fans - armed with Harry and Meghan masks, flags and Union flags - charge towards Slough station and onwards to Windsor.

The festival atmosphere was immediate as soon as I stepped out of the station, where I was welcomed by street vendors selling Royal-themed souvenirs and snacks, with unusual offerings including crumpets and Marmite.

Celine Bailly, Faith Nwosu and Precious Shumba celebrating the Royal wedding at Windsor Picture: ArchantCeline Bailly, Faith Nwosu and Precious Shumba celebrating the Royal wedding at Windsor Picture: Archant

Some people may have sneered at those who decided to camp out on the streets to secure a good spot along the Long Walk procession, but they had the last laugh after so many scrambled to find a decent position on the day.

But the crowds did not let that stand in the way of a celebration, with music and parades keeping spirits up and encouraging strangers to quickly become friends.

And the hundreds of police and safety guards refused to let this be just another day at work and joined in with the festivities - they danced, cheered, joked and took selfies with the public.

After hours of standing beneath the baking sun, the fanfare announced the arrival of the Royal guests and the wedding commenced.

Eyes were fixed on the big screens as guests made their way into the castle, with Meghan Markle drawing the loudest cheers.

As we all listened attentively to the hymns and prayers, it was the Most Rev Michael Curry who mesmerised us all with his enlightening address.

The first black presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church in the US delivered a powerful sermon about the power of love and faith, which made you look beyond the extravagant and glitzy displays of crowns, fascinators and military regalia.

“The power of love is demonstrated by the fact that we’re all here, two young people fell in love and we all showed up,” he said.

In his sermon, he cited the words of civil rights activist and preacher Martin Luther King, stating: “We must discover the power of love, the redemptive power of love.

“And when we discover that we will be able to make of this old world a new world.”

Just a few steps away there were homeless people, sitting looking at thousands of backs. I couldn’t help but feel the tragic irony in listening to Bishop Michael talk about loving thy neighbour.

“Imagine governments and nations when love is the way,” he said. “Imagine business and commerce when love is the way.

“Imagine this tired old world when love is the way. When love is the way, poverty will become history.”

Once the service had ended, the moment so many people had been waiting hours and even days for finally came when the newly-wedded couple greeted well-wishers on their procession through Windsor.

The crowds burst into cheers once they caught a glimpse of the sun-kissed bride and smiling prince stroll past on their horse-drawn carriage.

Whatever your views, the wedding and the delightful weather certainly brought people together.


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