Royal wedding finishing touches under way

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Media captionMeghan and Harry driven along wedding route

Final preparations are taking place on the eve of Saturday’s royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

Ms Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland, will meet the Queen for the first time at Windsor Castle later, accompanied by her daughter and future son-in-law.

Ms Ragland has already been introduced to some of the Windsors – including Prince Charles and Prince William.

It remains unclear who will walk Ms Markle down the aisle of St George’s Chapel, as her father will not attend.

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Media captionTMZ’s Sean Mandell says Thomas Markle thinks “news reports are not accurate”

Ms Markle, 36, released a statement on Thursday confirming her father would not attend the wedding and saying she hoped he could be given space to focus on his health.

Sean Mandell, from US celebrity news website TMZ, was the reporter who broke the news about Thomas Markle not attending the wedding.

Having spoken to Mr Markle on Wednesday, he said he was “doing well” and “recovering from surgery”.

Cake details

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Image caption Claire Ptak puts finishes touches to the wedding cake

Further details on the wedding cake have been revealed.

Its baker, Claire Ptak said it would be presented in a “non-traditional” way, displayed in a special “installation”.

The layered lemon and elderflower cake will be served to 600 guests at the afternoon reception at Windsor Castle.

Image copyright PA
Image caption The cake is being decorated with a white, elderflower Swiss meringue buttercream

The owner of Violet Bakery in east London described the cake as “a slight shift from tradition”.

She has been baking with the help of a team of six people for five days in the Buckingham Palace kitchens.

Some 200 Amalfi lemons are being used in the recipe, as well as 10 bottles of cordial made using elderflower from the Queen’s Sandringham estate.

She has not made a back up cake in case of a disaster – “It’s cake. It can’t go that wrong,” she said.

Family arrive

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Image caption Ms Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland (left) could walk her daughter down the aisle on Saturday

Other members of the Royal Family are also in Windsor ahead of the wedding, including the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall.

Ms Markle’s mother met William and Catherine and their eldest children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, at Windsor Castle on Thursday afternoon.

She took tea with Prince Charles and Camilla at Clarence House in London on Wednesday.

Image copyright Daily Mail/SOLO
Image caption “I have always been a daddy’s girl,” Ms Markle has said of her dad, Thomas

Thomas Markle’s absence leaves a question mark over who will walk Ms Markle down the aisle.

Her mother is one option; Harry’s father, Prince Charles, is another – or she could choose to walk alone.

Mr Markle had been due to arrive in the UK in the days before the wedding but became caught up in controversy over the apparent staging of photographs with the paparazzi.

Speaking to the BBC from Windsor, TMZ’s Sean Mandell said it became clear for Mr Markle that he would not be travelling to Windsor on Tuesday.

“Chest pains were really being exacerbated by the emotional strain he was under,” he said. “When doctors told him he needed to have surgery, he decided he needed to heed that advice, despite the fact he wanted to be here in Windsor for Meghan.”

“He definitely feels he’s been miss-characterised,” Mr Mandell added. “That’s why he felt the need to speak out when I reached him.”

Ms Markle will have 10 bridesmaids and pageboys, who are all under the age of eight.

She decided against having a maid of honour, saying she wanted to avoid choosing between her closest friends.



Read more: www.bbc.co.uk

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