Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Revellers across Hampshire and Isle of Wight celebrate royal wedding

Revellers across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight have celebrated the royal wedding at hundreds of street parties.

Councils across the county received applications for more than 200 events, although many more unofficial parties took place.

Several thousand people turned out to watch the wedding on a big screen at Southampton's Guildhall Square.

Two New Milton women spent two nights camping out in London to see their third royal wedding.

Margaret Tinsley from Hordle and Shirley Messinger from Bashley travelled to The Mall on Wednesday.

The friends, both in their 60s, took their daughters to the marriage of Prince Charles and Diana in 1981 and were also there when Prince Andrew married Sarah Ferguson in 1986.

Southampton residents carried on celebrating in the newly-refurbished square after the ceremony where the city council held a street party with live music.

Residents were told to dress in red, white and blue for the event and many took up the opportunity.

'Quite exciting'

Michaela Coutakis, 45, from the city, dressed herself in a Union Jack and came with friends.

She said: "We came today because it's an important national occasion.

"We're not royalists but it's bringing the country together and it's quite exciting really.

"We will remember this when we're old and grey and we can say we came down to the square to watch Kate and William get married."

Three generations of one New Zealand family came to watch in Southampton the day before they take part in their own family wedding in nearby Lymington.

Bridget Newlands, 31, from near Christchurch, was joined by Betty Blakemore, the great grandmother to her son, six-month-old William.

"It's exciting to be here and be part of it and it's all very British," she said.

During the event the first appearance of Kate was loudly cheered as was the moment that William struggled to get the ring on the finger of the his bride.

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In Portsmouth, several hundred people turned out to watch the wedding on a big screen in Guildhall Square.

Among those watching in Portsmouth were Andrea Grainger, 38, and her four-year-old son Jake.

Image caption Poppy joined in the celebrations in Winchester - photo by Michael Morris

She said: "We thought it would be nice to come and celebrate with everyone else in Portsmouth.

"It makes it more of an occasion to watch it on the big screen rather than being stuck indoors."

Jake added: "I am excited that Prince William and Katie are getting married and we are going to the street party to have fun."

Portsmouth council claimed its wedding celebration was the biggest free event in the region, although the street party in Central Square, Gunwharf Quays, was fully subscribed before the wedding even begun.

Many others also watched on the big outdoor screens that were set up across the region.

At least 23 street parties took place in Winchester, including one indoor "street party" in the city's Guildhall where organisers pre-empted the weather uncertainty by setting up a big screen, bunting, flags and decorated tables in the historic Bapsy Hall.

Both Portsmouth and Winchester's city councils waived the cost of street closures for royal wedding parties.

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