Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi stunned Royal Family fans after it emerged the couple had wed on the Windsor estate, with the likes of the Queen and Philip joining them for the special day. Their wedding will forever be remembered for the fact that so few were actually able to attend as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, a major shift from the usual pomp and ceremony expected from similar occasions. Such was the level of secrecy, even those with the most insider knowledge of the Firm were completely unaware that the wedding was set to take place.
Royal correspondent Camilla Tominey explained during a discussion with This Morning’s Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes, that it was only thanks to photographers spotting Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh heading towards the church that gave the game away.
She said: “[The media] were outflanked in the sense that we only got wind of it on the Friday morning after it had happened, and I think that photographers had been in the area because Captain Sir Tom Moore was being knighted in the afternoon at Windsor.
“So I think people were preparing for that. I think the Queen and Prince Philip were then spotted in a car making their way towards All Saints Church.
“People then started asking themselves questions and thinking ‘something’s going on at Royal Lodge’ and low and behold the news was confirmed by Buckingham Palace.”
The wedding was originally scheduled to take place at the Chapel Royal, in St James’ Palace, in May, but by April it became clear the event – which would not be funded by the public – would have to be postponed.
At the time, a royal spokesperson said it would be held on a different day but there had been “no plans to switch venues or hold a bigger wedding”.
But a friend of Beatrice’s told PEOPLE that the reason for the surprise July nuptials was “all about the Queen’s schedule”.
They added: “The Queen was the guest of honour, and it was very important that she was there.”
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In the aftermath of the wedding, speculation was rife as to why Prince Andrew, and his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson, had not been included within the official wedding photographs released by the Windsors.
It is often routine for the mother and father of the bride to be pictured, yet when the photographs were made public, Beatrice and Edo were snapped alongside the Queen and Prince Philip.
Ms Tominey said it was no doubt due to the controversy the Duke of York is currently facing because of his friendship with paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
She added: “I think the idea that they are excluded from the imagery is significant because it does mark this spectacular fall from grace, particularly for the Duke of York – someone who has always been well known for reminding us of the importance of his status as the Queen’s second born son.
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“Clearly there has been a collective decision that he should not feature in the imagery of this historic moment for the bride and groom, and that is rare.”
It does appear, however, that Beatrice is incredibly close to her grandmother, with the depth of their relationship on show during the wedding.
A friend of Beatrice’s said the moment she asked the Queen to borrow a dress for the occasion “was touching for both of them”.
They added: “Beatrice talks about her grandmother often, and it’s clear there’s a strong bond there — the dress and the tiara could not have been more perfect.”