THE Historic Walls of Westminster Abbey witnessed its sixteenth royal wedding on a blustery April Friday in London.
But the initially gloomy skies could do nothing to dampen the enthusiasm of thousands of revellers, camping out overnight for a front row seat around Whitehall and the Mall.
While the world had to wait until just before 11am to catch a momentary glimpse of Kate Middleton in her bridal dress as she dived from the Goring Hotel into a limousine, months of speculation were ended when the early news broke that the newly married couple would take the title of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
And the people of Ripley and Heanor joined in with two billion around the globe to watch the service.
Celebrating with a beer festival at the Poet and Castle pub, on Alfreton Road, Codnor, were a devoted group of royalists. Manager Andrea Billings set up a large screen and opened the place early so punters could enjoy the ceremony.
She said: “I said to myself I wasn’t going to watch it but I got here at nine o’clock and just put the screen on straight away and I have been running back and forth to watch it since! I think Kate handled herself so well – better than Diana in fact.”
It was a successful day for the area’s pubs as a number chose to screen the event live with speciality royal beers and entertainment on offer.
Landlord of the Thorn Tree, in Waingroves, Chris Buxton, 50, filled his cellar with no less than ten ales brewed especially for the occasion. And Ripley’s very own Amber Ales brewed it’s very own ‘I Do’ Roy-ale for the occasion.
He said: “A few people came in to watch the ceremony and the beers were pretty popular. I decided not to get the barbecue out but now I wish I had.
As the married couple took to the balcony of Buckingham Palace and the sun broke out here in Ripley and Heanor, those who had organised their own parties reflected on a celebratory day. Nigel and Kristen Tadman, from Nottingham Road Codnor, had decked their home with an array of flags and bunting as well as converting their shed into a royal-themed bar for the occasion. The aptly named Tadman’s Tavern was a popular attraction with their garden full of guests. Proud Nigel said: “I am a big royalist which some people laugh at. But we need this, it has been such a lift and you don’t have to spend a million pounds to have a party. Everyone contributed really, it’s just a great day for family and friends.”
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