Zara Phillips wedding: a relaxed and modern affairEdit
Zara Phillips, the Queen's grand-daughter, and Mike Tindall, the England rugby captain, married with none of the high pomp and ceremony that marked the marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton. The groom arrived with his rugby mates and chewed gum outside the church.The bride wore an off-the-peg dress, said she would keep her maiden name and promised to honour, not to obey.
As the Queen's grand-daughter, Zara Phillips, married Mike Tindall, the England rugby captain in Edinburgh yesterday, there was none of the high pomp and ceremony that marked the marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton in Westminster Abbey in April. And there was not a politician in sight. This was a relaxed, modern affair in glorious sunshine, a private wedding for friends at the Canongate Kirk on Edinburgh's Royal Mile.
But, for all its informality, this was not quite a "normal" wedding.
The royal wedding party was led by the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, and included Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall, and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Also among the guests were the England rugby stars Jonny Wilkinson and Ben Foden and their manager Martin Johnson, all Mr Tindall's close friends.
The 30 year-old Miss Phillips, once known as the "royal rebel", sprang a surprise when it emerged that she would not take Mr Tindall's name following their marriage.
The decision to keep her maiden name was taken because of her success as a world champion equestrian - and was very much in the spirit of the day.
Miss Phillips, who is 13th in line to the throne, had spent her final night as a single woman partying on the Royal Yacht Britannia with younger guests and stayed at the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the Queen's official Scottish residence.
She arrived at the 17th century kirk shortly after 3pm and just five minutes late, in a black Bentley, looking happy and relaxed, and accompanied by her father, Captain Mark Phillips.
As she stepped from the car and waved, smiling, to cheers and warm applause from the crowd of 6,000 who had gathered outside the kirk, the secret of another Royal wedding dress was unveiled.
Miss Phillips had chosen an off-the-peg ivory silk faille and silk duchesse satin gown by Stewart Parvin, a couturier to both the Queen and the Princess Royal.
The dress featured a chevron-pleated bodice, a dropped waist, and a "cathedral-length" train, and was designed to create a "bell-shaped" silhouette.
It was chosen from the White Room boutique in Minchinhampton, Glos, near her mother's Gatcombe estate - a low-key choice in contrast to the Duchess of Cambridge's Alexander McQueen design.
The bride also wore a Greek Key diamond tiara given to her by her mother, the Princess Royal.
Her pared-down, natural make-up was from Bobbi Brown, while her hair was worn in a swept-up chignon, styled by Evangelos Tsaipkinis, of the Mayfair salon Michael John.
The bride was accompanied by her maid of honour, the horse trainer Dolly Maude, whose six-year-old son Ted, six, Miss Phillips' godson, acted as page boy.
The bridesmaids were Stephanie Phillips, Miss Phillips's half-sister, the daughter of Captain Mark Phillips and his second wife Sandy Pflueger, Nell Maude, Jaz Jocelyn and Hope Balshaw. All wore dresses by Sue Palmer, a local dressmaker.
Mr Tindall, 32, arrived at the Kirk at 1.45pm, with Peter Phillips, Miss Phillips older brother, who acted as an usher. The rugby star smiled broadly and waved to the crowd. He chewed gum, a possible sign of nerves, as he waited outside the church.
Supporting Mr Tindall at the altar were his best man Iain Balshaw, 32, his former Gloucester and England team-mate - sporting a black eye from a moped accident in France earlier this month - and his groomsman, James Simpson-Daniel, 28, an England team-mate.
The groom, best-man and ushers, who included Miss Phillips' brother, Peter, wore black morning suits with spongebag trousers, by the bespoke London tailors, Cad & the Dandy, made with black "barathea" cloth sourced from Huddersfield, in a nod to the Tindalls' Yorkshire roots. They also sported white carnation buttonholes.
Well-wishers had begun to gather outside the kirk from 2pm on Firday to secure the best vantage point. By 1pm, when the guests began to arrive, a crowd of about 3,000 had gathered along Canongate.
One of the biggest cheers was given for Jackie Stewart, the former racing driver and Miss Phillips' godfather, who wore a bold blue, green and red kilt and blue navy jacket.
The bride and groom were joined by around 400 guests at the Kirk, which was decorated with white stargazer lilies, roses and carnations, and beech and box trees. The guests were piped into the Kirk by Derek Potter, the Queen's pipe major.
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh had travelled from Balmoral yesterday morning where they are spending their summer break.
The Queen wore a Stewart Parvin apricot wool coat and matching silk patterned dress, accessorised with a matching straw hat by the royal milliner Rachel Trevor-Morgan, The Duchess of Cambridge wore a fitted butterscotch skirt and matching jacket - which she had worn before - with a large disc-shaped fascinator while the Duchess of Cornwall chose a peppermint pleated dress, worn under a fitted jacket accessorised with an elaborate floral headdress.
The royal party also included Prince Harry, the Duke of York, Princess Beatrice who attended with her boyfriend Dave Clark, Princess Eugenie, the Earl and Countess of Wessex and Lady Sarah Chatto and her husband Daniel.
The bride's mother, the Princess Royal, who attended with her husband, Vice-Admiral Sir Timothy Lawrence, beamed and waved at the crowds as she arrived at the Kirk, wearing a rose pink skirt and embroidered cream jacket and a typically understated fascinator.
The wedding service was conducted by the Rev Neil Gardner, the Queen's personal chaplain in Scotland. Canongate is the parish church for Holyroodhouse.
The couple had chosen to marry in Edinburgh because of Miss Phillips' strong connections to Scotland – she attended Gordounstoun School in Morayshire and spent many holidays at Balmoral, the Queen's Scottish estate.
The Gordounstoun choir performed during the service, singing Amazing Grace and two psalms.
Miss Phillips vowed to "honour" her groom rather than "obey" when she exchanged her marriage vows.
Seated on the kirk's distinctive pale blue pews, alongside the Royal party were Mr Tindall's father, Phil, 65, a retired Barclays Bank worker, and his mother Linda, 63, a social worker and elder brother, Ian, 36.
The couple, who live in Crigglestone, West Yorks, have been married for 42 years. Phil, who was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease several years ago, was also a keen rugby player, and played for Otley from 1964 until 1973, captaining the side in the 1972-3 season.
Also present was Mr Tindall's uncle Stuart, and his wife Paula. Together with their daughters Sarah, 18, and Kathryn, 15, they perform as the folk band "The Tindalls".
The group has been playing together since 2005, with gigs at clubs and festivals across the Midlands and Home Counties.
Other guests included Sir Clive Woodward , the former England manager, former captains Lewis Moody, 33, Mr Tindall's former Bath team mates David Flatman, 31 and Paul Sampson, 34.
The female guests, dressed in a wide range of styles and bright colours, included Katherine Kelly, the Coronation St actress, Foden's girlfriend Una Healy, a pop singer with The Saturdays, and the television presenters Kirsty Gallacher and Natalie Pinkham.
Also attending were Miss Phillips' fellow eventers William Fox-Pitt, Elizabeth Power and Jayne Doherty.
One seasoned Royal fan camped out overnight after travelling 4,000 miles from her home in Ontario, Canada to catch a glimpse of the wedding party.
Margaret Kittle, 76, said: "I've been hooked on the Royal family since my parents took me to see George VI and the Queen Mother when I was four.
"I've seen every wedding since Princess Anne and Mark Phillips," she said.
After the service, the bride and groom emerged from the kirk smiling and waving, before exchanging a kiss under the archway to cheers from the crowds.
A Bentley drove them back to the Palace of Holyroodhouse 360 yards away, and they smiled and waved through the open windows at well-wishers.
The Royal wedding guests were also driven back to the Palace in a fleet of Bentleys and Jaguars, greeted by a group of pipers at the gates of Holyrood, while the rest of the wedding party followed in coaches for an afternoon reception of drinks and canapés, followed by dinner and dancing.
The Queen stayed only for drinks before leaving the guests to carry on partying, just as she had for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's wedding.
The bride and groom have decided to forego the traditional post-wedding honeymoon, and will return to their respective day jobs on Monday.
He will return to training for his next international match, an England v Wales friendly on August 6 at Twickenham, while Miss Phillips will prepare for the Blenheim Palace and Gatcombe International horse trials in September.