SUPPORT OUR JOURNALISM: Please consider donating to keep our website running and free for all - thank you!


Royal Weddings by the Numbers: The Prince and Princess of Wales

The Royal Wedding 2011

On 29 April 2024, it will be 13 years since the then-Duke and Duchess of Cambridge tied the knot. Like many royal weddings, millions crossed the globe tuned in to watch the affair. A royal spectacle with numbers to match.

Over 60 million people tuned in to watch

Ahead of the nuptials, British politician Jeremy Hunt, Culture Secretary estimated about 2 billion people would tune in to watch the wedding. Following the wedding, the figure was duty reported by media with some criticising news outlets for being unfounded and inaccurate. Estimated figures believe there was a peak audience of 26.3 million viewers and a total of 36.7 million watching some part of coverage in the UK. Over in the states, the wedding drew an average audience of 22.8 million. Leading to over 60 million tuning in at some point to watch the coverage.

Estimated cost of £23.7 million

It’s estimated the overall cost of the event was £23.7 million. The Australian newspaper, Herald Sun, estimates about $32 million Australian dollars was spent on security with another A$800,000 spent on flowers. The costs of the wedding were borne by the Middletons and the Royal Family themselves, while Her Majesty’s Treasury helped pay for security and transport. In lieu of wedding gifts, the couple asked donations be made to charities in their honour.

About 1 million people lined the streets of London

While millions watched a portion of the wedding at home, about a million people got a glimpse of the action in real life. People had lined the route between Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace to get a glimpse of the bride and groom on their procession following the ceremony.

5,500 street parties

There were about 5,500 applications through England and Wales to host street parties to celebrate the nuptials. In London alone, 850 applications were filed including one party that was hosted by then-Prime Minister David Cameron. Held in Downing Street, the event was for charity workers and local children. In addition, the anti-monarchy campaign group, Republic, held an alternative party in Holborn. The Camden Council initially blocked the event after businesses raised concerns about trade loss.

About 2,000 people came together for a party at the University of St Andrews in Scotland, the place where the royal couple first met. Hundreds also went to Edinburgh’s Festival Square to watch on a big screen. Meanwhile, Welsh celebrations were led by Anglesey where Prince William was a search and rescue pilot. This would be the same place where him and Kate lived after the wedding.

5,000 officers on duty the Friday before

About 5,000 police officers were on duty in London the night before the wedding to deal with potential threats ranging from anarchists, to stalkers and to international Islamist militants.

2,000 watched at the place the royal love story began

About 2,000 people came together for a party at the University of St Andrews in Scotland, the place where the royal couple first met.

1910 is when The Goring opened

1910 is the year when the luxury London hotel, The Goring opened its doors. This is where Kate Middleton and her family stayed ahead of the wedding.

1,900 guests in attendance

1,900 people were invited inside London’s Westminster Abbey to be there as the heir-to-the-throne married Kate. Around 650 people would then be invited by The Queen to Buckingham Palace for a lunchtime reception. A final 300 would be invited to an evening dinner hosted by then-Prince Charles.

140 tonnes of waste expected to be picked up

With about a million people lining the streets to watch the event, there’s bound to be a lot of waste. It was estimated there would be about 140 tonnes for workers to clean up when all was said and done. 140 tonnes is equivalent to the weight of over 50 Rolls Royces.

26 charities earning Will and Kate’s support

As Will and Kate has become patron and endorsed a number of organisations over the years, 26 was the number of charities the couple supported through a charitable gift fund for their wedding. The couple had asked donations be made in their honour rather than actual gifts.

20, the height in feet of eight trees

Six English Field Maple and two Hornbeam trees were included in floral displays inside The Abbey.

9 “grey” horses

9 “grey” horses formed the escort for the royal procession. Eleven were demonstrated to have a “good and calm” temperament and were selected ahead of the wedding.

5 horse-drawn carriages

5 horse-drawn carriages led the procession from Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace. The first carriage to lead would be the 1902 State Landau carrying the bride and groom.

About author

My name is Sydney Zatz and I am a University of Iowa graduate. I graduated with a degree in journalism and sports studies, and a minor in sport and recreation management. A highlight of my college career was getting the chance to study abroad in London and experiencing royal history firsthand. I have a passion for royals, royal history, and journalism, which led me to want to write for Royal Central.