Prince William reveals he only got half an hour’s sleep night before royal wedding
PRINCE William has disclosed that he only got half an hour’s sleep the night before his wedding, because of his "nervousness" and the noise of the crowd camped outside.
He also described how the Queen told him to tear up the original guest list for the ceremony in Westminster Abbey because it included 777 people whom neither he nor his bride knew.
In an interview with Alan Titchmarsh, the television presenter, for an ITV1 documentary about the Queen, the Duke revealed not only his wedding secrets but also the fact that the Queen’s exemplary service over 60 years has not left him much “wriggle room” for how he will eventually tackle the role.
Talking about the crowds camped outside Clarence House on the night before his wedding last year, the Duke said: “They were singing and cheering all night long, so the excitement of that, the nervousness of me and everyone singing – I slept for about half an hour.”
In the build-up to the wedding, he said: “There was very much a subdued moment when I was handed a list with 777 names on – not one person I knew or Catherine knew.
“I went to her and said, 'Listen, I’ve got this list, not one person I know – what do I do?’ and [the Queen] went, 'Get rid of it. Start from your friends and then we’ll add those we need to in due course. It’s your day.’?”
The Duke said he had grown closer to the Queen as he got older.
“We’re definitely a lot closer than we used to be,” he said. “I think being a small boy it’s very daunting seeing the Queen around and not really quite knowing what to talk about or what to ask her.
“I think over the years that’s got a lot better. I’ve grown up – hopefully – a little bit and tried to understand a bit more about her role and my own role.” Knowing he will one day be king, the Duke said: “There’s not much wriggle room left for me to try and find my own path but I will do. It’s just a matter of learning what’s gone before me.
“Everyone’s fascinated by the Queen’s life and how she’s done it. And I would just hope .?.?. that a bit of what she’s done and a bit of what she’s achieved, and a bit of how she’s conducted herself, we all take away in our own lives and try and do it ourselves. I would like to take all of her experiences, all of her knowledge and put it in a small box and to be able to constantly refer to it.”
One thing he will change, however, is the presence of corgis in the Royal household.
“They’re barking all the time .?.?. I don’t know how she copes with it,” he said.
Paying tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh, he said the Queen appreciated her husband’s sense of humour, even if it sometimes gets him into trouble. “He makes her laugh because some of the things he says and does and the way he looks at life is obviously slightly different than her, so together they’re a great couple,” he said.
“One of the things I know that over the years they’ve loved is when things go wrong – they absolutely adore it because obviously everything always has to be right, but when things go wrong around them they’re the first people to laugh.”
In an interview with Radio Times, Titchmarsh dismissed the theory that the succession could skip a generation.
“The idea that the succession might miss out Prince Charles altogether, and go straight to William, just because he’s a young man who’s married a glamorous young woman .?.?. I mean, come on, this isn’t Hollywood. This is the United Kingdom, not Tinseltown; our history stretches back a bit further.”
Elizabeth: Queen, Wife, Mother, is on ITV1 at 9pm on June 1.