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Guest list question
December 27, 2017
10:31 pm
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Gidzmo
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How much of a say do the engaged couple have on who is invited?  It looks like Harry wants to invite someone, but the government isn't too enthused on the idea.

Sean Hannity/Obamas not invited?

"Men's evil manners we write in brass; their virtues we write in water."

--Griffith, Queen Katherine's servant (from Shakespeare's "Henry VIII")

December 28, 2017
7:42 am
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Susan
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First of all, we need better sources than Sean Hannity and The Sun which is quoted as the source in the linked article above.  Apparently, The Sun is the only source for this, even in other media. Right now any talk about a government issue with the guest list is all speculation.  Harry's wedding is not a state occasion. It is a family wedding. The royal family is paying for it, not the government.  Currently, Harry is fifth in the line of succession and will move down to sixth when William and Catherine's baby is born.

Prince Edward, the youngest child of Queen Elizabeth II, was married at St. George's Chapel where Harry will also be married.  Edward did not have any heads of state at his wedding which means no US President or First Lady.  There were not many royals either. The Sultan of Brunei attended but as a family friend. The wedding of Charles and Diana was different as Charles was the heir to the throne.  There were heads of state or their representatives at that wedding.  Nancy Reagan attended. Every European royal family and many others were represented. The guest lists for Charles and Edward's weddings can be seen in their wedding articles at Unofficial Royalty: British Royal Weddings

Prince Harry is friends with Barack and Michelle Obama. He participated in the first meetings of the Obama Foundation in Chicago earlier this year.  Harry should be able to invite who he wants to his wedding and not be worried that he is snubbing anyone.

Susan

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December 28, 2017
9:06 pm
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Gidzmo
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Susan said
First of all, we need better sources than Sean Hannity and The Sun which is quoted as the source in the linked article above.  Apparently, The Sun is the only source for this, even in other media. Right now any talk about a government issue with the guest list is all speculation.  Harry's wedding is not a state occasion. It is a family wedding. The royal family is paying for it, not the government.  Currently, Harry is fifth in the line of succession and will move down to sixth when William and Catherine's baby is born.

Prince Edward, the youngest child of Queen Elizabeth II, was married at St. George's Chapel where Harry will also be married.  Edward did not have any heads of state at his wedding which means no US President or First Lady.  There were not many royals either. The Sultan of Brunei attended but as a family friend. The wedding of Charles and Diana was different as Charles was the heir to the throne.  There were heads of state or their representatives at that wedding.  Nancy Reagan attended. Every European royal family and many others were represented. The guest lists for Charles and Edward's weddings can be seen in their wedding articles at Unofficial Royalty: British Royal Weddings

Prince Harry is friends with Barack and Michelle Obama. He participated in the first meetings of the Obama Foundation in Chicago earlier this year.  Harry should be able to invite who he wants to his wedding and not be worried that he is snubbing anyone.  

The site I listed was the only one I had at the time.  The Telegraph has many of their articles behind a paywall, as does the London Times.

Back to the question, though: can Harry invite who he wants to the wedding?  Or will the Queen or the ministers veto anyone?

"Men's evil manners we write in brass; their virtues we write in water."

--Griffith, Queen Katherine's servant (from Shakespeare's "Henry VIII")

December 28, 2017
10:15 pm
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Scott

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Gidzmo said

The site I listed was the only one I had at the time.  The Telegraph has many of their articles behind a paywall, as does the London Times.
Back to the question, though: can Harry invite who he wants to the wedding?  Or will the Queen or the ministers veto anyone?  

As it is not a State Event, Harry and Meghan can pretty much do whatever they want.  But I wouldn't be surprised if they consulted The Queen should any potential questions arise.  And somehow, I don't see The Queen caving to pressure from anyone in the government about who can and cannot attend a private family wedding!

As Susan said, Harry seems to have cultivated a nice friendship with both President and Mrs Obama, so it wouldn't be surprising if they were on the guest list. 

December 29, 2017
5:34 am
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Jeremy

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I don't disagree with any of the above. For those who don't know, the potential sensitivity is to do with a potential visit to the UK by President Trump. He was reportedly offered a state visit, which now seems to have been downgraded to an official visit, and may even have been kicked into the long grass - there are plenty of people here, politicians amongst them, who don't want him to come at all, ever. The speculation is therefore that the royal family might be dragged into a political row if they are perceived to prefer a Democratic ex-president over a Republican president. The happy couple should be able to invite all their friends, of course, but life isn't always that simple when you're a member of the British royal family!

December 29, 2017
8:22 am
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Susan
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Gidzmo: The site I listed was the only one I had at the time.  The Telegraph has many of their articles behind a paywall, as does the London Times.

There were many news articles about this topic online.  They all had the same resource: the tabloid newspaper The Sun.

Susan

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December 30, 2017
9:19 pm
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Gidzmo
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Jeremy said
I don't disagree with any of the above. For those who don't know, the potential sensitivity is to do with a potential visit to the UK by President Trump. He was reportedly offered a state visit, which now seems to have been downgraded to an official visit, and may even have been kicked into the long grass - there are plenty of people here, politicians amongst them, who don't want him to come at all, ever. The speculation is therefore that the royal family might be dragged into a political row if they are perceived to prefer a Democratic ex-president over a Republican president. The happy couple should be able to invite all their friends, of course, but life isn't always that simple when you're a member of the British royal family!  

What is the difference between an official visit and a state visit?  

"Men's evil manners we write in brass; their virtues we write in water."

--Griffith, Queen Katherine's servant (from Shakespeare's "Henry VIII")

December 30, 2017
9:55 pm
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Scott

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In perhaps an overly basic explanation, a state visit includes all the pomp and ceremony - the big state dinner, the official welcoming ceremony, etc.  An official visit typically doesn't have any of that stuff.  

This Wikipedia articles explains it pretty well.

Wikipedia: State Visit

December 31, 2017
9:20 pm
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Gidzmo
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Scott said
In perhaps an overly basic explanation, a state visit includes all the pomp and ceremony - the big state dinner, the official welcoming ceremony, etc.  An official visit typically doesn't have any of that stuff.  

This Wikipedia articles explains it pretty well.

Wikipedia: State Visit  

Thank you, Scott!  So HM (or another RF member) would greet the official on a state visit.  But would attending Prince Harry's wedding be considered a state visit?

"Men's evil manners we write in brass; their virtues we write in water."

--Griffith, Queen Katherine's servant (from Shakespeare's "Henry VIII")

January 1, 2018
7:57 am
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Scott

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No, not at all.

January 4, 2018
6:30 pm
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Prof H

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William has publicly said that when the initial guest list for his and Catherine's wedding was being drawn but they were slightly horrified because they knew so few of the prospective guests.  He consulted the Queen who told him that the couple should start with their friends and associates and the rest would be worked out later.

In this case we have a former president who is a close friend of the groom and a current president who isn't.  Theresa May offered President Trump an official visit but there has been much protest about the possibility.  I would imagine there is no way a "family wedding" is going to be spoiled by political problems.  Maybe that's one reason the wedding is being held at St. George's Chapel.  It allows the number of guests, official or not, to be limited.

"If I had been born crested not cloven, you would not talk to me thus, sir."  Elizabeth I of England  

January 5, 2018
11:03 pm
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Gidzmo
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Prof H said
William has publicly said that when the initial guest list for his and Catherine's wedding was being drawn but they were slightly horrified because they knew so few of the prospective guests.  He consulted the Queen who told him that the couple should start with their friends and associates and the rest would be worked out later.

In this case we have a former president who is a close friend of the groom and a current president who isn't.  Theresa May offered President Trump an official visit but there has been much protest about the possibility.  I would imagine there is no way a "family wedding" is going to be spoiled by political problems.  Maybe that's one reason the wedding is being held at St. George's Chapel.  It allows the number of guests, official or not, to be limited.  

William's was more of a state affair, as I remember, because he is second-in-line for the throne.  Harry's currently fifth-in-lime, so his wedding might not be as "grand".

"Men's evil manners we write in brass; their virtues we write in water."

--Griffith, Queen Katherine's servant (from Shakespeare's "Henry VIII")

January 6, 2018
8:35 am
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Susan
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Gidzmo said

William's was more of a state affair, as I remember, because he is second-in-line for the throne.  Harry's currently fifth-in-lime, so his wedding might not be as "grand".  

William's wedding was not a state occasion but there were governmental guests, etc. - Governors-General and Prime Ministers from Commonwealth countries and ambassadors representing countries with which the United Kingdom has normal diplomatic relations.  The American ambassador would have represented the United States. Interestingly, ambassadors were not accompanied by their spouses or partners. In addition, there were a number of foreign royals invited.  A partial guest list can be seen at William's wedding article here at Unofficial Royalty.

William's wedding was at Westminster Abbey and there were about 1,900 guests.  His parents' wedding was a state occasion requiring the invitation of many foreign heads of state.  Charles and Diana's wedding was at the larger St. Paul's Cathedral and there were about 3,500 guests.

Harry's wedding is a family wedding at the very much smaller St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle - the size of a large church.  At Prince Edward's wedding held at St. George's Chapel in 1999, there were 550 guests.

Susan

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