Press Coverage

Jittery Kate returns to church for rehearsal

Victoria Murphy 16 Apr 2011

NERVOUS Kate Middleton sneaked into Westminster Abbey again yesterday to rehearse for the big day. As a timetable for the royal wedding was released, the bride-to-be slipped secretly into the 1000-year-old church to prepare for the April 29 ceremony.

With just two weeks to go, she was joined at the run-through by chief bridesmaid sister Pippa and William’s best man Prince Harry. It came just three weeks after another rehearsal at the abbey - and there are more to come.

Yesterday’s visit was to help her six little bridesmaids and page boys, all born to royalty, the aristocracy or royal aides, prepare for their roles.

Kate is terrified of fluffing her lines in front of 1900 guests, including heads of state, and the watching world.

She has been practising repeating the full name of her husband-to-be - William Arthur Philip Louis - to make sure she doesn’t get tongue-tied.

Wills’s mum Diana was so nervous at her wedding in 1981 that she called her new husband Philip Charles Arthur George - instead of Charles Philip Arthur George.

William was not at the Abbey yesterday because he was working as an RAF search and rescue pilot in Wales.

But he has told his friends he is feeling the pressure, even saying publicly that his knees were “tapping” together at another rehearsal three weeks ago.

A royal source said yesterday: “Of course, Kate and William want everything to go perfectly on their big day. “There will be lots of rehearsals. This particular one was focused on the bridesmaids and page boys as Kate is very conscious she wants them to be comfortable on the big day.”

After the rehearsal, the children were given a short tour of the ancient building by the Very Reverend John Hall, Dean of Westminster, who will conduct the service on the day.

The bride, dubbed Waity Katie for hanging on so long for a proposal, plans to turn the tables on Wills when she arrives at the abbey for the 75-minute ceremony. Royal aides revealed Kate wants to follow in Diana’s footsteps by turning up late for the ceremony. A source said: “It’s every bride’s prerogative.”

The UK is set to go royal wedding crazy - spending £1.7 billion on mementos, food and drink. Industry advisor Active International warned some retailers will run out of Wills and Kate stock.

Kate Middleton

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