Meghan Markle's parents to visit queen, have wedding roles

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In past royal weddings, the bride's mother has remained in the background, ceremonially upstaged by the bride's father, who accompanies her to the venue and then walks her down the aisle.

Officials didn't predict the weather — springtime in England can be glorious or horrid, sometimes on the same day — but they outlined plans for a celebration created to spread from the privileged environs of Windsor Castle throughout Britain and the world, via television and the internet.

Meghan's father Thomas and his ex-wife Doria Ragland will arrive for the wedding a week before.

Even, Harry's family will also play an important role at the wedding. Kensington Palace has confirmed that Harry will meet his future father-in-law just a few days before the royal wedding on Saturday 19 May.

The press secretary also revealed that both of Meghan's parents will be flying to the United Kingdom the week of the wedding "allowing time for Prince Harry's family, including The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, and The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, to spend time with them before the big day".

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This time will mark a (modest) departure from convention: Ms. Ragland will ride with her daughter to St. George's Chapel, and then her father, Thomas Markle, will walk her down the aisle.

On a related note, can we just say that an official press release is an extremely effective way to communicate wedding day plans to guests and pushy relatives? One of Diana's two older sisters, Jane Fellowes, will give a reading during the ceremony to represent Diana's family.

Harry has chosen William as his best man. But don't bother looking for Prince Louis — born in late April — as the youngest prince will not attend the wedding. Meanwhile, Harry and Meghan, who will spend their first night as husband and wife at Windsor Castle, have chose to postpone their honeymoon, choosing instead to take the traditional post-wedding vacation at a later date.

To most of these, Prince Harry's communications secretary, Jason Knauf, promised "operational guidance" closer to the wedding, as if the journalists were preparing to embed with military units. They will spend their first night as a married couple in Windsor Castle. The Prince and his bride-to-be previously escaped to Botswana to celebrate Meghan's 36th birthday a year ago (17), while the African nation is also where Harry sourced the main diamond for the engagement ring he presented to her in November (17). The queen's husband has been recovering from hip replacement surgery and has not participated in any public events since being discharged from the hospital in mid-April. The morning of the wedding, the full Order of Service will be published on the royal family's website so fans and well-wishers can follow along with the service at home.

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