Following in the tradition of the British royal family, Prince William and Kate Middleton exchanged vows Friday morning in London’s Westminster Abbey. Thousands gathered outside and many more viewed the nuptials on television and online.
We blogged the day’s events:
3:15 – 4:45 a.m. ET: The general congregation will arrive at the Great North Door of Westminster Abbey. The weather in London is a cool 52 degrees Fahrenheit and partly sunny. So far the rain is holding off.
A steady stream of guests arrives on foot and by car at the Abbey. The approach of singer Elton John draws cheers from the spectators.
4:50 a.m. ET: Governors-general and prime ministers of former UK colony countries, the diplomatic corps and other distinguished guests arrive at the Abbey.
5:10 a.m. ET: The bridegroom Prince William and his best man Prince Henry of Wales leave Clarence House for Westminster Abbey. They arrive at the Abbey at 5:15 a.m. ET (or 10:15 a.m. local time). Right on schedule, Prince William and his entourage drive up in a Bentley. The prince is wearing the red uniform of the Irish Guards regiment, of which he is an honorary colonel.
5:25 a.m. ET: Members of the royal family leave Buckingham Palace for Westminster Abbey. They arrive at the Abbey at 5:30 a.m. ET. Kate Middleton’s mother, Carole, is wearing a sky blue suit dress designed by Catherine Walker and a hat with matching trim. She arrives with Kate’s brother James at her arm.
James has the only reading in the ceremony, from the Bible, Romans 12: 1-2, 9-18. It reads in part: “Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor.”
5:35 a.m. ET: The Duke of York, Princess Beatrice of York, Princess Eugenie of York, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, the Princess Royal and Vice Admiral Timothy Laurence leave Buckingham Palace for Westminster Abbey. They arrive at the Abbey at 5:40 a.m. ET.
5:38 a.m. ET: Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall leave Clarence House for Westminster Abbey. They arrive at the Abbey at 5:42 a.m. ET (or 10:42 a.m. local time). Camilla Parker Bowles dons a champagne silk dress and coat designed by Anna Valentine, the same designer who made her wedding dress to Prince Charles in 2005.
5:40 a.m. ET: The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh leave Buckingham Palace for Westminster Abbey. They arrive at the Abbey at 5:45 a.m. ET (or 10:45 a.m. local time). The Queen is wearing a cheerful daffodil yellow dress and matching hat. She waves to the crowd from her car.
5:48 a.m. ET: The bridesmaids and pages leave the Goring Hotel for Westminster Abbey. They arrive at the Abbey at 5:55 a.m. ET. Pippa Middleton, 27, is Kate’s maid of honor. The four bridesmaids range in age from 3 to 8.
5:51 a.m. ET: The bride Kate Middleton, accompanied by her father Michael Middleton, leaves the Goring Hotel for Westminster Abbey. The soon-to-be-princess is resplendent in a Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen dress overlaid with lace. As expected, her arms are covered because of the solemnity of Westminster Abbey. She is wearing a tiara under her veil.
6 a.m. ET: The marriage service begins (11 a.m. local time). The service will be relayed by audio speakers along the route between Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey.
The married couple are now known as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
7:15 a.m. ET: The carriage procession of the bride and bridegroom with a Captain’s Escort of the Household Cavalry, followed by the Queen’s procession with a Sovereign’s Escort of the Household Cavalry, leaves Westminster Abbey for Buckingham Palace.
7:30 a.m. ET: The bride’s carriage procession arrives at Buckingham Palace.
7:40 a.m. ET: Members of the royal family and members of foreign royal families arrive at Buckingham Palace.
From 7:40 a.m. ET: Other guests for the reception arrive at Buckingham Palace. The Queen of England hosts a luncheon for 600 guests and later, a dinner dance for 300 family and friends.
8:25 a.m. ET: The queen and the bride and bridegroom, together with their families, appear on the balcony. Lots of waving and smiling on the balcony and a quick kiss between the new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William and Kate. The crowd chants for more and the couple briefly kisses a second time as military airplanes fly in formation overhead.
READ MORE: This royal wedding conjured memories of that of Prince Charles and Lady Diana 30 years ago. Ray Suarez recalls covering the grand event.