APRIL 26th-28th, 2011

April 26th, 2011

As a royalty watcher you should of course arrive at the place-to-be in time. So on Tuesday April 26th, 2011 I took the airplane from Amsterdam to London, where I had booked a hotel already late November. Not too close to Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace, but close to Paddington Station. A friend of mine, Anuschka, flew in earlier on the same day from Germany. I met her at Westminster Abbey after she had visited it. I was too late to get in, but I had been there before, so I didn't mind that much. The first people were already camping on the street in front of the huge press stand with good view on the entrance of the Abbey. We had a quick look at Hatchard's, the royal bookshop at Piccadilly, before heading back for the hotel to have dinner nearby. I bought a special edition Oyster card of the wedding by the way.

April 27th, 2011

As there was nothing on the royal wedding programme, and we both had never been to the former royal residence Hampton Court Palace, we took the train there on Wednesday morning. Lots of things to do and to see there, so I am sure we still missed some parts. But we met some "royals" walking around, and enjoyed the beautiful gardens. Of course the end of April is quite a good time to visit the palace if you love gardens. Happily the whole week the weather was nice, not too hot, a bit too much cold wind, but dry.





Photos & copyright: Netty Leistra


We had read there was to be a wedding rehearsal at Westminster Abbey on Wednesday, but it was not known when. From the train back to London we saw helicopters circling above the abbey and thought we would be too late. But when we came there, we overheard journalists saying that the rehearsal might take place soon. Unfortunately after about one hour waiting (5pm) everybody was sent away from the entrance of the Abbey. Still it took until 7.20pm until Prince William and Catherine Middleton finally arrived, and disappointed everyone. Three cars with dark windows passed us very quickly, drove past the entrance to a side building, and disappeared under the gate. No opportunity to see anything. We had a last look at the people camping on the other side of the street, and then went back to the hotel and had dinner.



Photos & copyright: Netty Leistra


April 28th, 2011

Tired after all the walking Anuschka and I decided not to do too much on Thursday. We had a look at Buckingham Palace, where the last changing of the guards before the wedding took place about half an hour too late.


Photo & copyright: Netty Leistra


When we walked in the direction of the Buckingham Palace shop we suddenly heard somebody shouting my name. It turned out that, like us, our internet acquaintance Ken - whom I had met before - also was walking around to see what was going on. We had a look at the Goring Hotel, where halfway the day already tens of journalists and photographers were standing. The bride was only to arrive in the evening.


Photo & copyright: Netty Leistra


We had a quick look at the Buckingham Palace shop afterwards, but the shop was so crowded that we went outside as quick as possible. Too scared to break something, and too lazy to queue to pay for anything.



Photos & copyright: Netty Leistra