Thursday 22 August 2019

Kirsty Blake Knox: Why we love right royal(ish) weddings

The Duchess of Cambridge's sister Pippa Middleton arrives with their father Michael Middleton, at St Mark's church in Englefield, Berkshire, for her wedding to her millionaire groom James Matthews at an event dubbed the society wedding of the year. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 20, 2017. See PA story ROYAL Pippa. Photo credit should read: Kirsty Wigglesworth/PA Wire
The Duchess of Cambridge's sister Pippa Middleton arrives with their father Michael Middleton, at St Mark's church in Englefield, Berkshire, for her wedding to her millionaire groom James Matthews at an event dubbed the society wedding of the year. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 20, 2017. See PA story ROYAL Pippa. Photo credit should read: Kirsty Wigglesworth/PA Wire
Pippa Middleton, the sister of Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, arrives for her wedding to James Matthews at St Mark's Church in Englefield, west of London, on May 20, 2017. REUTERS/Justin Tallis/Pool
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Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

Don't for a minute try and tell me you haven't been counting down the days and the minutes for this - the biggest quasi-royal wedding of this year.

Today is the day that glossy haired, fit as a fiddle and mocha-tanned Pippa Middleton weds millionaire hedge-fund manager James Matthews.

Pippa Middleton, (R) is escorted by her father Michael Middleton, as she arrives for her wedding to James Matthews at St Mark's Church in Englefield, west of London, on May 20, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Justin TALLISJUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images
Pippa Middleton, (R) is escorted by her father Michael Middleton, as she arrives for her wedding to James Matthews at St Mark's Church in Englefield, west of London, on May 20, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Justin TALLISJUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images
Pippa Middleton, the sister of Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, arrives for her wedding to James Matthews at St Mark's Church in Englefield, west of London, on May 20, 2017. REUTERS/Justin Tallis/Pool
The Duchess of Cambridge's sister Pippa Middleton arrives with their father Michael Middleton, at St Mark's church in Englefield, Berkshire, for her wedding to her millionaire groom James Matthews at an event dubbed the society wedding of the year. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 20, 2017. See PA story ROYAL Pippa. Photo credit should read: Justin Tallis/PA Wire

This is a big deal. In fact, the Matthews' wedding have even managed to eclipse our own Irish royalty.

The wedding of Alannah McGurk - daughter of Prime Time host, gifted hula hooper (ibelow) and future President of Ireland Miriam O'Callaghan and Tom McGurk.

That wedding will take place in the Kingdom of Kerry this afternoon but I'm afraid Pippa and James' shindig takes the biscuit here.

The buildup has been extraordinary.

ENGLEFIELD GREEN, ENGLAND - MAY 20: Pippa Middleton arrives for the wedding Of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews at St Mark's Church on May 20, 2017 in Englefield Green, England.
ENGLEFIELD GREEN, ENGLAND - MAY 20: Pippa Middleton arrives for the wedding Of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews at St Mark's Church on May 20, 2017 in Englefield Green, England.

We have all read about the two compulsory outfit changes, the luxury eco friendly Portaloos, the giant glass marquee (won't it get hot?) and the fact that Spencer Matthew's girlfriend Vogue Williams can't go because she is attending an extremely important photo call on Dublin's Henry St (ahem).

We know that Prince George has a starring role and that Kate is terribly worried he might go rogue and trash the place - thus forcing her to ditch the nanny.

Stories on the wedding have been doing Trojan work on our website leading me to believe that despite our protestations, Irish people are obsessed with royals and, by default, their not-quite-so-royal relations.

My theory was copper-fastened last week when I had to follow Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall on their whistle-stop tour of Dublin.

It finished in the British Embassy, where a weird dolly mixture of politicians, business people, and 'personalities' gathered together.

All of whom, including Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams, appeared to be beside themselves with excitement when Camilla and Charles walked in.

TD Noel Rock was smiling so hard I thought his face was going to split in two, while former Xposé presenter Lorraine Keane scurried around the room with a photo of herself meeting the Prince of Wales 10 years ago.

"I showed it to him and he said I hadn't aged a day," she said afterwards. Given that Lorraine previously claimed she is frequently mistaken for the Duchess of Cambridge, I'm surprised Charles didn't think his daughter-in-law had hopped across the Irish Sea for the occasion.

In short, everyone was tripping over themselves to impress the pair. Myself included, I hasten to add. I spent the last few days trying to figure out why, despite ourselves, we can't help but like the royals and have come up with the following reasons:

* They love dogs and have a fleet of corgis and dorgis. We are a nation of dog lovers so admire this greatly;

* They like the rain - the queen is always marching about in soft rain with one of those plastic rain bonnets on her head;

* They are achingly uncool;

* Their favourite TV shows are The Killing and Last of the Summer Wine;

* They have brilliant nicknames like Flossy, Wills, Pip, and Flibbertigibbet (this is largely speculation);

* And finally they throw insanely over-the-top extravagant parties that are quite simply a joy to read about.

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