Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal wedding carriage procession will see the newlyweds transported in the same type of coach used during the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s nuptials.
Harry and Meghan visited the royal mews at Buckingham Palace to select the Ascot Landau which will be the centre piece of public celebrations after they marry in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle.
‘Prince Harry and Ms Markle are very much looking forward to this short journey which they hope will be a memorable moment for everyone who has gathered together in Windsor to enjoy the atmosphere of this special day,’ Kensington Palace tweeted.
Crown Equerry Colonel Toby Browne, who runs the royal mews, said the type of carriage chosen is one Harry knows well, as two Landaus were used during William and Kate’s carriage procession after they married in 2011.
‘He was best man at his brother’s wedding so he rode in one of these with the bridesmaids and pages as part of the procession following the wedding,’ Col Browne said.
‘But he’s also been in the Queen’s procession at the royal meeting at Ascot, so he’s ridden in these quite regularly.’
The carriage procession will begin at 1pm after the wedding service, with the newlyweds driven along Castle Hill, into Windsor town centre before returning along the famous Long Walk for their reception.
If it rains on the wedding day the wet weather option is the Scottish State Coach. Built in 1830, a new top was created in 1969 with large windows, and a partial glass roof, to allow spectators to see the passengers.
‘The fair weather option, the Ascot Landau, it was selected because it’s a wonderfully bright, small, lovely carriage. Very easy for people to see, the passengers can sit up quite high – so there’s lots of visibility for everybody,’ Col Browne said.
‘It was built in 1883, it’s one of five that we have, most of them are down in Windsor, we always keep one in London for occasions.’
He explained the Landaus are also used at the end of the annual St George’s Chapel Garter Service to drive members of the royal family up the hill to Windsor Castle, and Harry’s carriage is in pristine condition as it was refurbished last year.
Six horses, Windsor Greys, will be involved with Meghan and Harry’s carriage ride following their May 19 wedding.
A team of four, Milford Haven, Storm, Plymouth and Tyrone, will pull the Landau and two others – Sir Basil and Londonderry – will be outriders.
‘We’ve always had two outriders and traditionally they acted to clear the path and herald the arrival of the principal in their carriage,’ the Crown Equerry added.
‘They will be just a short distance in front of the carriage itself and of course in front of them and behind the carriage will be the Household Cavalry travelling escort.’
A postilion rider, sat on one of the two lead carriage horses, will drive the coach and another rider will sit behind him on a Windsor Grey in the second row. Two footmen will sit behind the newlyweds at the back of the Landau.
State cars from the Royal Mews include Bentleys, Rolls-Royces and Daimlers and they will be used to transport members of the royal family on the day.
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