Pyjama party for late-night nuptials
The bunting will be hung with pride, flags will be waved and cream teas imbibed as royal wedding fans get set to celebrate in style in Marlborough.
Prince Harry and fiancee Meghan Markle will tie the knot today as royalists across the world get ready to watch the pair say ‘‘I do.’’
And residents at a Blenheim rest home are more excited than most as they prepare to mark the prestigious occasion in their pyjamas.
Ashwood Park Retirement Village will hold a special pyjama party allowing residents to mark the historic moment in style, but also be ready for bed should tiredness take over.
Activities co-ordinator Sharon Ealand says there are a number of British residents at Ashwood Park, especially among the women, who are particularly looking forward to watching the occasion unfold.
‘‘They have been very excited as many are very patriotic and love the royal family.
‘‘The pomp and ceremony of the occasion is important to them so we thought we’d mark it. There will be special food and wine and probably scones,’’ she says.
‘‘It’s brought back a lot of memories of when Queen Elizabeth got married and her coronation. There’s been a lot of reminiscing going on; it’s really transported some residents back in time,’’ she says.
Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle announced their engagement on November 29 last year, sparking wedding fever among fans. The couple will get married at St George’s Chapel in the grounds of Windsor Castle with around 800 guests.
The service, conducted by the Dean of Windsor, The Rt Revd David Conner, will begin at 11pm New Zealand time.
Ealand says she intends to wear her pyjamas too for the wedding which, she says, continues to be a hot topic of conversation.
‘‘All the controversy over her dad has got them talking. Will he show up? Will Prince William walk her down the aisle? There’s been lots to talk about,’’ she says.
New Zealand has gifted $5000 on the couple’s behalf to NZ charity Pillars, which helps support children of prisoners, as a wedding gift.
The royal couple announced they wanted people to give to charity rather than send them any presents in person.
But it is not the presents the residents of the rest home wing are interested in, they are more excited about the dressses Markle and Queen Elizabeth will wear for the big day.
‘‘She’s been part of their lives for a long time,’’ says Ealand.
Joan Tinkler, left, and and May Harris will celebrate the royal wedding at Ashwood Park Retirement Village.