Four weddings and a marriage of political convenience: Get ready for a summer of love with five high-profile couples about to get hitched in VERY different ceremonies

The Mail on Sunday
16th May 2011
By Emily Hill

Now that William and Kate have finally tied the knot, celebrity wedding watchers may be suffering from post-nuptial depression. But don’t panic. The coming weeks will witness the high-profile unions of a host of attractive and popular public figures – as well as the wedding of Labour leader Ed Miliband. Here’s our tongue-in-cheek guide to the top society ceremonies . . .

Zara Phillips & Mike Tindall – July 30
The ‘second’ Royal Wedding of the year will unite Zara Phillips, 30, to her long-term love, England rugby star Mike Tindall, 32. Prince Harry introduced the pair in 2003 and Tindall finally asked for Zara’s hand last year. He slipped the ring on her finger and the world’s Press criticised Zara, 12th in line to the throne, for having dirty nails in her engagement photos.
VENUE: Canongate Kirk in Edinburgh. The reception will be held at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in the city, the Queen’s
official home in Scotland.
DRESS: Irish designer Paul Costelloe is
hotly tipped.
TRANSPORT: Vintage Bentley.
GUEST LIST: All Zara’s Royal relatives – from the Queen to the newlywed Duchess of Cambridge – are expected to attend, alongside members of the England rugby team.
GLOBAL INTEREST: High. Many will want to see the arrival of Prince William and his new Princess at church but there will be no Hello! deal after the criticism levelled at Peter Phillips, who sold his snaps for £500,000.
EMBARRASSING RELATIVES: It remains to be seen if the Duchess of York will receive an invitation.
DON’T MENTION: The groom’s nose. Princess Anne has already suggested Tindall might want to get his eight-times-broken nose fixed in time for the nuptials, but the sportsman is not keen.
WOW FACTOR: 10/10 The future Mrs Tindall, mad on sports and horses, not dresses and decorum, will want as little fuss as possible but the appearance of the other Royals will ramp things up . . . with all eyes on Kate.
No-nonsense Zara won’t want any blubbing on her big day.

Earl Spencer & Karen Gordon – June 18
It’s third time lucky – hopefully – for the late Princess of Wales’ brother, Earl Spencer, 46, who is to wed Canadian philanthropist Karen Gordon, 37, aka the bravest woman in Britain. The Earl already has two failed marriages behind him – to model Victoria Lockwood and Caroline Freud – and six children. The bride-to-be is a mother of two, previously married to millionaire film producer Mark Gordon.
VENUE: Althorp. A private ceremony will take place at the Earl’s 14,000-acre estate in Northamptonshire.
DRESS: Bibhu Mohapatra. The bride is known to be an ardent fan of the hot New York designer, and wore one of his designs to the Royal Wedding last month.
TRANSPORT: Aquatic? One of the great charms of Althorp is the ‘Round Oval’ lake. Guests may find it hard to resist the allure of the rowing boat.
GUEST LIST: The Spencer clan. Strictly family and close friends only, the Earl’s elder daughters Lady Kitty, Lady Amelia and Lady Eliza will lend glamour to proceedings. The Earl’s nephews, Princes Harry and William, together with the hottest new Windsor addition, the Duchess of Cambridge, will surely be invited.
GLOBAL INTEREST: Moderate. Though, as with Zara, the presence
of William and Kate will guarantee coverage.
EMBARRASSING RELATIVES: There were red faces last year when Lady Amelia was accused of kicking a man on crutches at a McDonald’s
drive-through in Cape Town.
Charges have since been dropped.
DON’T MENTION: Bianca, Lady Eliot. Earl Spencer announced his intention to marry new girlfriend Karen Gordon a matter of months after calling off his engagement to widowed aristocrat Lady Eliot. Friends of Lady Eliot accuse
Spencer of being a ‘control freak’.
WOW FACTOR: 2/10 Negligible. The intensely private day will be kept very low key.
ROMANCE FACTOR: 5/10 Earl Spencer has form in the marriage stakes. This occasion represents the triumph of romantic hope over marital experience.

Kate Moss & Jamie Hince – July 2
Kate Moss will tie the knot with Jamie Hince, guitarist with moderately popular beat combo The Kills. She is said to have joked she will be the most famous Kate to be married in 2011.
VENUE: Rumoured to be a church near Kate’s ten-bed abode in the Cotswolds.
DRESS: Said to be designed by Kate herself, although Kate Middleton’s designer Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen has also been mooted. Moss was a close friend of the late McQueen but may not want to ape her Royal namesake.
TRANSPORT: Coaches for the guests and an MG sports car with balloons for the newlyweds.
GUEST LIST: Hince’s bandmate Alison Mosshart will be best man, with Moss’s daughter Lila head bridesmaid. Lila’s father, publisher Jefferson Hack, is set for the front pew. Sadie Frost and Jude Law, whose son Rafferty is to be an usher, and other members of the Primrose Hill set will be there. So will Topshop mogul Philip Green, Naomi Campbell, Stella McCartney and Mario Testino.
GLOBAL INTEREST: Considerable. One recent survey claimed that young Britons would rather have an invitation to Kate Moss’s wedding than to Westminster Abbey. Middle-aged Britons, however, would probaby do anything to avoid it.
DON’T MENTION: John Galliano. Originally he was meant to design the wedding dress – but the former Dior man was quietly dropped after his anti-Semitic rant in a Paris bar leaked on to the internet. Also don’t talk about Pete Doherty. Moss was once rumoured to be engaged to the scruffy dope fiend. And steer clear of the ‘Cocaine Kate’ scandal. Nor should you comment on Kate’s notoriously ‘bohemian’ 30th birthday party. And don’t mention . . . in fact, just keep schtum.
WOW FACTOR: 8/10 Legions of waiters will serve sausage rolls, three bands are to perform and the event will resemble a rock festival. Lovely, if you like that sort of thing.
ROMANCE FACTOR: 6/10 If true, rumours that Moss, 37, and Hince, 42, already tied the knot in Sicily last year make their Cotswolds ceremony seem like little more than another excuse for a party.

Lily Allen & Sam Cooper – June 11
Pop star Lily Allen, 26, and her fiance, builder Sam Cooper, 32, have been dating since the summer of 2009. Sam proposed on Christmas Day in Bali.
VENUE: Around 100 close friends will witness Lily and Sam take their vows at St James the Great Church in Cranham, Gloucestershire. Then follows a lavish reception for 300 in the garden of Lily’s country bolthole near Stroud.
DRESS: Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel. No veils of secrecy here. Long known for teaming trainers with ball dresses, Lily is unlikely to wear her Nikes for her nuptials but her free-spirited style may yet show through. ‘I wouldn’t be surprised if Lily went barefoot in her haute couture,’ says my mole.
TRANSPORT: Agricultural. The picture on Lily’s ‘Save The Date’ card shows the soon-to-be-weds on a tractor. Could the idiosyncratic English rose use a John Deere rather than a Jag to get her to the church on time?
GUEST LIST: As the daughter of well-connected film producer Alison Owen and TV star Keith Allen, Lily will not want for celebrity guests. Former Popworld presenter Miquita Oliver is to be head bridesmaid. Other guests include Elton John, David Furnish and DJ Nick Grimshaw.
GLOBAL INTEREST: Low. Last year Lily prompted celebratory street parties when she announced that she was quitting the music industry in order to follow a ‘normal’ life.
EMBARRASSING RELATIVES: Keith Allen. For many years virtually a permanent fixture at the Groucho Club, Allen has a well-earned reputation as ‘a man who knows how to party’ or, in non-PR speak, a drunken boor. His father-of-the-bride speech will guarantee Lily’s blushes.
DON’T MENTION: Kate Moss. The singer and the supermodel were once bosom buddies but when Lily heard that Kate planned to throw a hen night clashing with her own she was furious. They soon crossed one another off their guest lists.
WOW FACTOR: 8/10 Rumours abound that the cost of the wedding is rocketing as the Smile singer sits up all night finessing every detail. To kick off the celebrations, Lily has planned a ‘cricket tea’ with finger sandwiches and tea in cups with saucers. Reminiscent, perhaps, of the bangers and mash ostentatiously served at Kate Winslet’s first wedding.
ROMANCE FACTOR: 10/10 Lily has had plenty of suitors but Sam is definitely ‘the one’. Expect lots of tears and rose petals.

Ed Miliband & Justine Thornton – May 27
Romance appears to be a foreign concept to Ed Miliband, 41. Justine, 40, had been his partner for six years and bore him two children, Daniel and Samuel, before he proposed. Perish the thought that if Ed had not become Labour leader he would never have felt the need to pop the question.
VENUE: Langar Hall, a two-rosette hotel near Nottingham.
TRANSPORT: Car-pool. With only 50 guests arriving, the Miliband clan can all whizz up the M1 from North London together
GUEST LIST: Possibly the only thing this wedding has in common with the Royal Wedding is that neither Gordon Brown nor Tony Blair are invited.
GLOBAL INTEREST: There is little interest from certain quarters of Ed’s own family, let alone globally.
EMBARRASSING RELATIVES: Ed’s sister-in-law, Louise Shackleton. She is married to Ed’s brother David and has been slow to forgive Ed for running against him as Labour leader.
DON’T MENTION: The best man – there won’t be one. David asked Ed to be his best man but perhaps fearing a refusal Ed has not returned the compliment.
WOW FACTOR: 1/10 In deference to austerity Britain, Ed and Justine are said to be doing it all on the cheap. Estimated cost? £3,000.
ROMANCE FACTOR: 2/10 Having taken so long to get married, the couple appear determined to do everything as unsoppily as possible. They’re having a ‘hag do’ (Hen And Stag – geddit?) rather than separate parties.

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