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How Kent celebrated Prince William and Kate's wedding 10 years ago

It has been decade since the marriage of Prince William and Catherine Middleton and today is their 10th Wedding anniversary.

Here Charlie Harman looks back on the royal moment and how it was celebrated in the county.

William and Kate tied the knot in Westminster Abbey 10 years ago today. Picture: Steve Parsons/Press Association
William and Kate tied the knot in Westminster Abbey 10 years ago today. Picture: Steve Parsons/Press Association

Will and Kate were seemingly all anyone could talk about in the lead-up to the wedding, which took place on April 29, 2011.

The capital was packed with well-wishers, and everyone questioned whether best man Prince Harry and maid of honour Pippa would be the next royal romance.

But away from the capital, Kent was celebrating the special public holiday with a range of street parties and gatherings.

People were celebrating everywhere on what proved to be a very sunny day, whether they were in hospital, in a pub or just in their gardens.

Campbell Road Royal Wedding Street Party, Maidstone. Picture: Matthew Walker
Campbell Road Royal Wedding Street Party, Maidstone. Picture: Matthew Walker
A sign at the street party held in Playstool Close, Newington. Picture: Andy Payton
A sign at the street party held in Playstool Close, Newington. Picture: Andy Payton
Wildwood also got in on the action, naming two rescued dormice after the royal couple. Picture: Fiona Paterson
Wildwood also got in on the action, naming two rescued dormice after the royal couple. Picture: Fiona Paterson
Crowds turned out to Dover's Market Square to watch the wedding on big screen. Picture: Paul Amos
Crowds turned out to Dover's Market Square to watch the wedding on big screen. Picture: Paul Amos
Dickens Cafe was also popular on the day, as customers got a great view of the screen
Dickens Cafe was also popular on the day, as customers got a great view of the screen
Dover, like much of England, came to a standstill during the ceremony
Dover, like much of England, came to a standstill during the ceremony

In fact, the county had the highest number of celebratory street parties, with at least 66 roads officially closed for the occasion.

While quiet roads and cul-de-sacs could get the closures for free, some roads were charged up to £1,000 for the bunting-filled events.

Dover really got into the swing of things, with the giant screen on Market Square broadcasting the event and a special Dover Priory to London bus service whisking away jubilant well-wishers.

North Thanet MP Roger Gale also enjoyed a street party held to honour the occasion, pictured here with Carol Adams (left) and Barbra Young (Right). Picture: Carol Adams
North Thanet MP Roger Gale also enjoyed a street party held to honour the occasion, pictured here with Carol Adams (left) and Barbra Young (Right). Picture: Carol Adams

However Canterbury residents didn't seem quite so eager to have such street parties, with the district's residents only submitting one application for a road closure.

Parties also happened off the county's streets, with places like Eastwell Manor in Ashford and Leeds Castle near Maidstone offering tickets to screenings of the ceremony.

Possibly Kent's largest celebration on the day was in Gravesend, where about 450 school pupils paraded through the town on the morning of the wedding.

Visitors watched the wedding on the large screen at Leeds Castle. Picture: John Wardley
Visitors watched the wedding on the large screen at Leeds Castle. Picture: John Wardley
People got their nails painted specially for the occasion, and wore jewellery fit for a princess. Picture: Andy Payton
People got their nails painted specially for the occasion, and wore jewellery fit for a princess. Picture: Andy Payton

One mother-and-daughter duo had to get into the royal wedding mood extra early, as they were tasked with making the bridesmaids' dresses.

Based in Goudhurst, Charlotte and Nicki Macfarlane had to operate secretly as they crafted the outfits worn by the likes of Prince Edward's daughter Lady Louise Windsor and the Earl of Snowdon's daughter, Margarita Armstrong-Jones.

The Reception class Wills and Kate - Ben and Tia, both 5 - got into the royal wedding fun at St Anselms Primary School, Dartford. Picture: Nick Johnson
The Reception class Wills and Kate - Ben and Tia, both 5 - got into the royal wedding fun at St Anselms Primary School, Dartford. Picture: Nick Johnson
Year R pupils (from left) Devon, Steven, Kaitlin and Jacob took part in a Wills and Kate stamp competition at Thames View Infant School, Rainham. Picture: Andy Payton
Year R pupils (from left) Devon, Steven, Kaitlin and Jacob took part in a Wills and Kate stamp competition at Thames View Infant School, Rainham. Picture: Andy Payton

Some people may have had an even better reason to celebrate the occasion, as Kent features very heavily in Princess Kate's extended family tree.

Also one of the eight trumpet players selected to perform at the wedding was Adam Smith from Rochester.

Senior aircraftman Adam Smith, from Rochester, was one of eight trumpet players from the Central Band of the RAF who played in Westminster Abbey for the wedding. Picture: Sandra Rowse
Senior aircraftman Adam Smith, from Rochester, was one of eight trumpet players from the Central Band of the RAF who played in Westminster Abbey for the wedding. Picture: Sandra Rowse
Lindy Cornich of Graveney and made Will and Kate Scarecrows to raise money for an injured soldier. Picture: Chris Davey
Lindy Cornich of Graveney and made Will and Kate Scarecrows to raise money for an injured soldier. Picture: Chris Davey
Eleanor Boyle and Eleanor Harris-Hall watch the service at Little Chart, Ashford
Eleanor Boyle and Eleanor Harris-Hall watch the service at Little Chart, Ashford
Kent and Canterbury Hospital restaurant staff are pictured with their royal wedding decorations
Kent and Canterbury Hospital restaurant staff are pictured with their royal wedding decorations
Therapy Hairdressers Canterbury, celebrate the Royal Wedding in style
Therapy Hairdressers Canterbury, celebrate the Royal Wedding in style

It's now 10 years on, and Will and Kate's popularity has been largely unaffected despite the recent fracas caused by the explosive departure from The Firm of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle - who married in 2018.

Interestingly, Prince Harry and Meghan's wedding drew much fewer street party applications across Kent - less than a tenth - than that of Will and Kate.

Prince Harry and Meghan's wedding at Windsor Castle drew much less fanfare from the Kent public. Picture:Dominic Lipinski/PA
Prince Harry and Meghan's wedding at Windsor Castle drew much less fanfare from the Kent public. Picture:Dominic Lipinski/PA

Since 2011, the Duchess of Cambridge has gone on to hold more than 20 patronages of charitable and military organisations.

She also created the 'Heads Together' mental health awareness campaign, launched in April 2016 with her husband and brother-in-law.

In 2012 and 2013, she was also named by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world.

Kate, pictured during a visit to Cliftonville in 2015, has remained incredibly popular over the last 10 years. Picture: Gary Browne
Kate, pictured during a visit to Cliftonville in 2015, has remained incredibly popular over the last 10 years. Picture: Gary Browne

The fact that about two billion people watched the Will and Kate's wedding 10 years ago means a number of events are planned to celebrate their decade of happy marriage.

Beaverbrooks has a fantastic offer on Thursday, in that the first customer to prove they have the same name as one of the royals gets a £100 gift card.

The jewellery company, which has a store at Bluewater Shopping Centre in Greenhithe, is asking potential winners to bring along valid ID as proof.

Brothers David Lawrence, 82, and Robin Lawrence, 75, enjoy the day in Folkestone
Brothers David Lawrence, 82, and Robin Lawrence, 75, enjoy the day in Folkestone
Residents in Linden Crescent, Folkestone hold a street party
Residents in Linden Crescent, Folkestone hold a street party
The Royal Wedding street party at Chequers Court, Strood
The Royal Wedding street party at Chequers Court, Strood
Lorriane and Punch Brimstead raise a glass in Fielding Drive, Larkfield
Lorriane and Punch Brimstead raise a glass in Fielding Drive, Larkfield
A street party in Yalding
A street party in Yalding

You can also mark the occasion without having to get off your sofa.

Will and Kate are set to celebrate the special anniversary with their family, and Covid means there shan't be any large gatherings as might have been expected.

However royal fans will get a chance to rewatch highlights of the day, as well as hear from attendees and staff.

The BBC is running a special documentary entitled 'Royal Wedding: A Day to Remember' on Friday.

The hour-long programme will begin on BBC One at 7.30pm.

To read more of our in-depth features click here.

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