Kate and William give aides list of dates

PRINCE William and Kate Middleton were on “cloud nine” last night after announcing their engagement and have already given royal aides a list of possible wedding dates and venues.

The couple spent part of the day yesterday discussing their marriage plans with officials and “all options are on the table”, a St James’s Palace spokesman said.

The spokesman said: “They are still very much on cloud nine and are still enjoying the happy moment.

“They are enjoying talking to friends and family and enjoying one another’s company and showing their commitment to each other publicly.”

Staff from the office of the Lord Chamberlain – the senior official of the Royal Household – will be involved with planning the wedding.

Possible venues are St Paul’s Cathedral, where William’s parents the Prince of Wales and the late Diana, Princess of Wales, were married; Westminster Abbey, where the Queen’s marriage ceremony was held, or even St Clement Danes, the RAF’s main church in central London, as the prince is an RAF Search and Rescue helicopter pilot.

The couple are thought to favour a March date for their big day but some time in the summer may also be picked.

The St James’ Palace spokesman said: “Now our job is to consult with the relevant parties the Queen, Duke of Edinburgh, Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, the Middletons and other parties and report back.

“We will give them the results of that consultation so they are in a position to make a decision.

“As they said yesterday they want the day to be as enjoyable as possible, and they are mindful of the economic situation.”

The policing bill for the wedding, to provide security for the public and guests who could include world leaders and royalty, could run into tens of millions of pounds.

But broadcaster Tom Bradby, who was the first journalist to interview the Prince and his fiancée, said the royal wedding would be a boost to British tourism.

Speaking on This Morning, Bradby, ITV News’ political editor, said: “We’ve got to understand this is a massive global (event), it’s playing enormously all over the world.

“I would imagine there will be many, many tourists from America and places like that who will want to come here and be in London during the event.

“The costs, if we split it up amongst us, will be so infinitesimally small and the impact on brand Britain and just the impact from say tourism (will be big).

“We’ve now got this next year and then the (Queen’s) Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics (in 2012).”

“I think they want to have it in March... their people have now got to go down to (Buckingham) Palace and sit around and go ‘right, now who do we invite? Do we invite the Obamas, do we invite the Sarkozys?”’

Italy’s La Stampa dubbed William’s fiancée “the Cinderella of Bucklebury” in a reference to her home village in Berkshire.

The National Post in Canada said her “very name screams of normalcy”.

An announcement about the venue for the royal wedding and a date is expected in the coming days.

But Bradby said that what the couple craved was an ordinary life together in north Wales, where the prince works as an RAF search and rescue helicopter pilot, away from the intense scrutiny their engagement has created.

He added: “I think William is very focused on making sure that, yes, he’s a royal, but what he really wants is a happy, quiet, domestic family life, and he’s pursued that with a certain degree of ruthlessness.

“What they’ve mastered quite well is the art of coming out and doing something like yesterday and then withdrawing.

“In two days they will be up in Anglesey down a long track, he will be going to work flying helicopters and coming home in the evening to sit around with her. We’ll be a million miles away.”

The announcement has also prompted the public to have a flutter on a range of wedding-related bets.

Westminster Abbey is the favourite venue among betters with odds of 8-11, followed by evens for St Paul’s Cathedral, St Clement Danes 6-1, and 1000-1 for the O2 Arena and Wembley Stadium.

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