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Say Hello! Queen Elizabeth’s favourite grandson weds

Sunday, 18 May 2008 - 3:03am IST

The Queen of England is supposed to have enough money to buy anything she wants — certainly she can afford to throw a lavish wedding

Couple are forced to sell exclusive rights of nuptials to Hello! magazine for a sum of over £5,00,000

LONDON: The Queen of England is supposed to have enough money to buy anything she wants — certainly she can afford to throw a lavish wedding for her eldest, and touted to be her favourite, grandson.

But it seems that Peter Phillips and his bride Autumn Kelly were forced to sell the exclusive rights of Saturday’s nuptials to celebrity magazine Hello! for a sum of more than £5,00,000 (five hundred thousand pounds) because they could not afford to pay for the small family wedding.

Royal courtiers are said to be extremely upset and embarrassed by the commercialisation of a royal wedding — the first in history — and are blaming Autumn, the new addition to the family for being ‘too pushy’.

“The blame is being laid at her door,” said one Royal insider. “Perhaps they want to divert attention away from Peter’s involvement,” he added. Traditionally in British society, the wedding is paid for by the bride’s father. In this case Autumn is a Canadian ‘commoner’, being the daughter of a hairdresser and an electrical retailer and her family were unable to afford a lavish party fit for a Queen.

The Queen’s daughter Princess Anne, who is the groom’s mother, is said to have been unwilling to foot the estimated £50,000 bill. Had this been an Indian marriage and certainly if the grandmum was a queen, then she would have certainly paid for the extravaganza.
Queen Elizabeth II, however, did not offer to pay for her eldest grandson’s marriage. Left with little option, the couple fixed up a deal with Hello! magazine whose pages are generally filled with gossip about WAGs and soap stars.
However this has led to a lot of red faces and anger among the public who feel they have been deprived of a royal wedding. All the Queen’s children’s marriage ceremonies have been huge church affairs and have been televised for her subjects to witness.
Even Prince Charles’ second marriage to Camilla, which had to be a civil ceremony due to royal guidelines and had to remain a small private affair in Windsor Guild Hall, had a separate church blessing at Windsor Castle which was shown in full on national television.
Saturday’s wedding was the first of the Queen’s grandchildren tying the knot and many feel that by selling the rights, the royal family has set a bad precedent and gone against the behaviour expected of them.
The wedding was a small affair held at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle followed by a lavish reception at Frogmore House in Windsor Home Park. The wedding party included all of the royal family with the exception of Prince William who was out of the country. However, his girlfriend Kate Middleton and Prince Harry’s girlfriend Chelsea Davy were both present. A contingent of 70 people from the bride’s family and friends had flown over from Canada for the event.

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