South West Wales

Royal wedding: Prince William lucky say Kate's teachers

Kevin and Denise Allford
Image caption Kate Middleton's former teachers Kevin and Denise Allford are staging a house party

Few in south west Wales will be following the royal wedding more closely than two of Kate Middleton's former teachers.

Kevin and Denise Allford taught her at prep school and are celebrating with a house party at their home in Llanarthne, Carmarthenshire.

Elsewhere street parties are planned across the region.

The big screen in Swansea's Castle Square will be providing extensive TV coverage throughout the day.

Swansea and Neath Port Talbot councils have approved almost 40 applications for street parties between them, there are six in Pembrokeshire, and Carmarthenshire has agreed three road closures, including one in Market Square, Llandovery.

Events have been taking place throughout the build-up.

Twenty five primary schools in Swansea held their own parties before breaking up for the Easter holidays, St Aidan's Church in Wales School in Wiston, Pembrokeshire, staged its own mock wedding for pupils, staff and family at St Mary's Church.

Image caption Youngsters at Llwynhendy Children's Centre in Llanelli had their own party this week

Youngsters at Llwynhendy Children's Centre in Llanelli enjoyed bright sunshine for their own wedding party on Wednesday.

The Allfords, who taught Miss Middleton when they were both house parents at St Andrew's prep school in Pangbourne, Berkshire, fondly remember her calling at their cottage when they lived in the school grounds for mugs of hot chocolate.

As well as watching the ceremony, Mrs Allford said they would record it so they can watch it again and scan the background for any of their other former pupils who may have been invited.

Both taught Kate at the school in the mid 1990s: Mr Allford was her form tutor for two years and his wife took games lessons.

Mrs Allford, who then taught at Burry Port Junior School near Llanelli after the couple moved to Wales, said: "We had games every afternoon so I got to know her very well.

"We did netball in the winter and rounders in the summer - she was an exceptional athlete, as was her sister Pippa.

"She was a tremendous swimmer and an excellent team player."

"Good looking couple"

Mr Allford was also her French and German teacher.

Image caption Kate Middleton 'always had a smile on her face,' says her former teacher Denise Allford

"I think it's probably the best group of kids I've ever taught," he said.

"They used to come bursting in in the morning full of it.

"[Kate was] well organised, you could rely on them and they were all very responsible even at 12 or 13. She always had a smile on her face but took everything seriously."

It was while at the school the couple had their daughter.

They say having a young baby at the time meant the girls boarding at the school would call around in the evenings.

Mrs Allford said: "[Kate] helped blow out the candles at my daughter's first birthday.

"When we heard the news [of their engagement] we felt rather than her being lucky, he's the one who's lucky because he has got such a great companion for life.

"They are very good looking couple, everyone is going to love them."

Her husband added: "I like the look of him. He looks very natural - they both do. I like the way he giggles in public."