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Royal wedding: The Mayo man who designed two dresses

As Prince Harry and Meghan Markle walk down the aisle today, Bairbre Power uncovers the story of couturier John Cavanagh, a talented man from the Republic who designed not one, but two royal wedding dresses…

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I spy: in an earlier life Mayo-born courturier John Cavanagh served in the British Army Intelligence Corps

I spy: in an earlier life Mayo-born courturier John Cavanagh served in the British Army Intelligence Corps

Royal approval: Princess Alexandra with her husband Angus Ogilvy and their bridal party

Royal approval: Princess Alexandra with her husband Angus Ogilvy and their bridal party

The Duke of Kent marries Katherine Worsley. Both women wore dresses designed by John Cavanagh

The Duke of Kent marries Katherine Worsley. Both women wore dresses designed by John Cavanagh

I spy: in an earlier life Mayo-born courturier John Cavanagh served in the British Army Intelligence Corps

Sitting in the V&A Art and Design archives in London's Earl's Court, sifting through boxes of documents and royal wedding memorabilia, is a rewarding experience for a fashion enthusiast. However, on the eve of the nuptials of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, my research mission took on an added frisson of excitement and intrigue.

I had requested to view, by appointment, archival material relating to the Irish couturier John Cavanagh, who was a society fashion favourite in London of the 1950s and '60s, dressing royalty, socialites and stars of stage and screen.

Cavanagh was a member of the Incorporated Society of London Fashion Designers (IncSoc), an exclusive band of top-end couturiers like Norman Hartnell and Hardy Amies who, between them, dressed the Queen for many years.

Cavanagh's salon in Mayfair's Curzon Street was frequented by a chic clientele but undoubtedly the most high profile period of his career involved two royal brides.

Royal wedding: Meghan Markle's wedding dress [Photos] Close

Meghan Markle arrives for her wedding ceremony to marry Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Oli SCARFFOLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images

Meghan Markle arrives for her wedding ceremony to marry Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Oli SCARFFOLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19:  Meghan Markle arrives for her wedding to Prince Harry at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Andrew Matthews - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19: Meghan Markle arrives for her wedding to Prince Harry at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Andrew Matthews - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

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Meghan Markle (R) and her mother, Doria Ragland, arrive for her wedding ceremony to marry Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Oli SCARFFOLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images

Meghan Markle (R) and her mother, Doria Ragland, arrive for her wedding ceremony to marry Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Oli SCARFFOLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images

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WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Meghan Markle (R) with her mother Doria Ragland drive down the Long Walk as they arrive at Windsor Castle ahead of her wedding to Prince Harry on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Meghan Markle (R) with her mother Doria Ragland drive down the Long Walk as they arrive at Windsor Castle ahead of her wedding to Prince Harry on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

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WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19:  Meghan Markle and her mother Doria Ragland make their way to St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle before the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Phil Harris - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19: Meghan Markle and her mother Doria Ragland make their way to St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle before the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Phil Harris - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

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Meghan Markle arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for her wedding to Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Meghan Markle arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for her wedding to Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

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Meghan Markle arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for her wedding to Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Meghan Markle arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for her wedding to Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for their wedding. (Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire)

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for their wedding. (Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire)

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In 1961 when Princess Marina's son, the Duke of Kent, married Katharine Worsley in York Minster, the Irishman was invited to design the dress. The groom's mother, Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark, who married the Duke of Kent in 1934, was already a fan of his and the wedding was hailed as one of the most dazzling gatherings of European royalty for many years.

Front row guests included the Queen (the groom's first cousin), Prince Philip and the Queen Mother, all of whom had a bird's eye view of the dramatic 15ft double train. For many royal wedding watchers, Cavanagh's dress crafted from 237 yards of diaphanous French fabric that shimmered, still remains a favourite more than half a century later.

If the bride and her mother-in-law were anxious, as reported in some circles, about the scale of the gown in advance, the Irishman was proved right in the end.

Cavanagh's royal star was ascending two years later, when Princess Alexandra of Kent married the Honourable Angus Ogilvy in Westminster Abbey, Cavanagh was again invited to mastermind something wonderful.

His vision was translated into magnolia-tinted cotton lace and he described how "the dress flows in a simple unbroken line silhouetting a slender waist line, into a very long train cut in one with the skirt. The closely moulded bodice has a high rounded neckline and long, close-fitting sleeves". The veil, which interestingly, was in the same fabric as the dress, was 20ft long and edged with a wide border of old Valenciennes lace which belonged to Princess Nicholas of Greece.

Two high profile royal weddings in three years was quite an achievement for the boy who left school at 17 to take a job picking up pins for a couturier. There was the added satisfaction that many guests were wearing his designs, too. But what do we know about the early years of the handsome Irishman who broke through into a very exclusive circle of royals?

John Bryan Cavanagh was born in Co Mayo on September 28, 1914, and educated at St Paul's school in London. Back in Dublin, I tracked down Cavanagh's birth certificate from 1914 which was registered in the town of Belmullet and in the district of Binghamstown.

His father, Cyril Cavanagh, was listed as a merchant, with an address at Pembridge Gardens, London. His mother was a Murphy before her marriage and her name, in a spidery script somewhat difficult to read, appears to say 'Annie' Francis.

At 18, he was appointed a junior assistant at the newly opened London branch of the prestigious House of Molyneux. When war broke out, he enlisted and his papers in the archive include an outline of how he joined the infantry in August 1940 and later joined the British Army Intelligence Corps.

Royal wedding: Prince Harry, Prince William & the Royal Family arrive at St George's Chapel [Photos] Close

Prince Harry (left) and The Duke of Cambridge (right) arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Ian West/PA Wire

Prince Harry (left) and The Duke of Cambridge (right) arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Ian West/PA Wire

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Prince Harry (left) and the Duke of Cambridge arrive for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at Windsor Castle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Prince Harry (left) and the Duke of Cambridge arrive for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at Windsor Castle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

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Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, (L) arrives with his best man Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, (R) at the West Door of St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018 for his wedding ceremony to marry US actress Meghan Markle. / AFP PHOTO / POOL AND AFP PHOTO / Odd ANDERSENODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, (L) arrives with his best man Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, (R) at the West Door of St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018 for his wedding ceremony to marry US actress Meghan Markle. / AFP PHOTO / POOL AND AFP PHOTO / Odd ANDERSENODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

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Doria Ragland watches the arrival of the Queen and the Duke of Edinurgh at St George's Chapel ahead of the wedding of her daughter Meghan Markle to Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Doria Ragland watches the arrival of the Queen and the Duke of Edinurgh at St George's Chapel ahead of the wedding of her daughter Meghan Markle to Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

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The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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(L-R) The Duke of York, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank sit ahead of the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Jonathan BradyJONATHAN BRADY/AFP/Getty Images

(L-R) The Duke of York, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank sit ahead of the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Jonathan BradyJONATHAN BRADY/AFP/Getty Images

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Meghan Markle's mother Doria Ragland (L) arrives for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Gareth FullerGARETH FULLER/AFP/Getty Images

Meghan Markle's mother Doria Ragland (L) arrives for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Gareth FullerGARETH FULLER/AFP/Getty Images

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Prince and Princess Michael of Kent arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Prince and Princess Michael of Kent arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

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The Earl of Wessex (right) and James, Viscount Severn arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

The Earl of Wessex (right) and James, Viscount Severn arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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The Earl and Countess of Wessex and their children Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn take their seats inside the Chapel ahead of the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Jonathan BradyJONATHAN BRADY/AFP/Getty Images

The Earl and Countess of Wessex and their children Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn take their seats inside the Chapel ahead of the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Jonathan BradyJONATHAN BRADY/AFP/Getty Images

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WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19:  MIke Tindall and Zara Tindall arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle before the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Gareth Fuller - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19: MIke Tindall and Zara Tindall arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle before the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Gareth Fuller - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

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Princess Eugenie arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Princess Eugenie arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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Sophie, Countess of Wessex and Prince Edward arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Sophie, Countess of Wessex and Prince Edward arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

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Britain's Prince Andrew, Duke of York, (C) arrives with Britain's Princess Beatrice of York (R) and Britain's Princess Eugenie of York (L) arrive for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL AND AFP PHOTO / Odd ANDERSENODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

Britain's Prince Andrew, Duke of York, (C) arrives with Britain's Princess Beatrice of York (R) and Britain's Princess Eugenie of York (L) arrive for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL AND AFP PHOTO / Odd ANDERSENODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

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WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19:  Sarah, Duchess of York arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle before the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Gareth Fuller - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19: Sarah, Duchess of York arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle before the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Gareth Fuller - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

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Whatever about his duties, it is perhaps fanciful to describe Cavanagh as going from 'spy' to 'couturier', but after being de-mobbed, he met Pierre Balmain who offered him work in Paris. Finally, in January 1952, Cavanagh established his own fashion house.

That spring, his first collection earned him rave reviews for his fabrics. The collection included boleros in pique and a ballgown in Irish lace studded with crystals. The following year, his collection was named 'Coronation' to celebrate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II and was a success.

I have to admit my heart was beating extra fast as I opened the assortment of grey folders contained in the boxes at the V&A - envelopes containing drawings and large scale ink drawings of the finished dresses.

One definitely got a sense of the Irishman from his correspondence and his careful notations in pencil, but by far the most exhilarating moments were untying the cotton ribbon and unfolding the layers of cream tissue which revealed off-cuts of fabric from both the Duchess of Kent's 1961 wedding gown, with its semi-shimmering fabric ordered from Judith Barbier in Paris, and Princess Alexandra's dress fabric adorned with 3D decorative acorns and oak leaves.

It was fascinating perusing the back stories to the dresses, the correspondence associated with ordering fabric, the replies in French, the coloured hand drawings of the dress, the Princess' going away outfit, the pageboys and bridesmaids, of which Princess Anne was one.

One folder is restricted to the public until the year 2044 - it contains the measurements of the bridesmaids from 1963!

Cavanagh's own press release typed on fine paper provide flourishing insights into the dress and his expert eye for planning details. This was, of course, his second royal wedding and I laughed out loud in the quiet reading room when I came across the line proposing a 'watch-dog'.

In short, Cavanagh proposed to attend to the bride with his staff at Kensington Palace on the morning of the wedding and then go ahead of them to Westminster Cathedral but "leaving behind Miss Gladys Fitch as 'watch-dog' who would assist the Princess into her car".

Like so many designers, the advent of ready-to-wear in the boutique culture of the 1960s triggered a slow-down in couture and in the early 1970s, Cavanagh closed his salon. His genius for tailoring was shared far and wide and lucky are those who still have his Vogue Couturier patterns.

Royal wedding: Guests arrive at St George's Chapel [Photos] Close

Amal Clooney and George Clooney arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Amal Clooney and George Clooney arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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Amal Clooney and George Clooney arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Amal Clooney and George Clooney arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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Oprah Winfrey arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Ian West/PA Wire

Oprah Winfrey arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Ian West/PA Wire

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Meghan Markle's friend, US actor Patrick J. Adams and wife Troian Bellisario arrive for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Ian WESTIAN WEST/AFP/Getty Images

Meghan Markle's friend, US actor Patrick J. Adams and wife Troian Bellisario arrive for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Ian WESTIAN WEST/AFP/Getty Images

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Meghan Markle's friend, US tennis player Serena Williams (CL) and her husband US entrepreneur Alexis Ohanian (CR) arrive for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Odd ANDERSENODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

Meghan Markle's friend, US tennis player Serena Williams (CL) and her husband US entrepreneur Alexis Ohanian (CR) arrive for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Odd ANDERSENODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

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David Beckham and Victoria Beckham arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

David Beckham and Victoria Beckham arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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David Beckham arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

David Beckham arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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Idris Elba and Sabrina Dhowre arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Idris Elba and Sabrina Dhowre arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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James Blunt (right) and Sofia Wellesley arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

James Blunt (right) and Sofia Wellesley arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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Marcus Mumford and Carey Mulligan arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

Marcus Mumford and Carey Mulligan arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

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Pippa Middleton (left) and James Matthews (second left) arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Jackson/PA Wire

Pippa Middleton (left) and James Matthews (second left) arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Jackson/PA Wire

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Parasport athlete Dave Henson, arrives at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Toby Melville/PA Wire

Parasport athlete Dave Henson, arrives at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Toby Melville/PA Wire

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David and Victoria Beckham (both right) talk with Sir Elton John (left) and David Furnish as they arrive in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

David and Victoria Beckham (both right) talk with Sir Elton John (left) and David Furnish as they arrive in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

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Nacho Figueras and his wife Delfina Blaquier arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

Nacho Figueras and his wife Delfina Blaquier arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

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Serena Williams arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Serena Williams arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

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Amal Clooney and George Clooney arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Odd Andersen/PA Wire

Amal Clooney and George Clooney arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Odd Andersen/PA Wire

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Joss Stone (right) arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

Joss Stone (right) arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

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WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19:  Cressida Bonas arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle before the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Ian West - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19: Cressida Bonas arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle before the wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Ian West - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

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Pippa Middleton and James Matthews arrive for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Chris JacksonCHRIS JACKSON/AFP/Getty Images

Pippa Middleton and James Matthews arrive for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Chris JacksonCHRIS JACKSON/AFP/Getty Images

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Cressida Bonas arrives for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Chris JacksonCHRIS JACKSON/AFP/Getty Images

Cressida Bonas arrives for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Chris JacksonCHRIS JACKSON/AFP/Getty Images

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Eliza Spencer, Louis Spencer, Victoria Aitken and Kitty Spencer arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Eliza Spencer, Louis Spencer, Victoria Aitken and Kitty Spencer arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

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Unidentifiable guests arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

Unidentifiable guests arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

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Michael and Carole Middleton arrive in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Michael and Carole Middleton arrive in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

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James Haskell and Chloe Madeley arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

James Haskell and Chloe Madeley arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

PA

Delfina Blaquier arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Jackson/PA Wire

Delfina Blaquier arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Chris Jackson/PA Wire

PA

Lady Edwina Louise Grosvenor (left) and Dan Snow arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Lady Edwina Louise Grosvenor (left) and Dan Snow arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

PA

Prince's Harry's friend, British singer James Blunt (C) arrives for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL AND AFP PHOTO / Odd ANDERSENODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

Prince's Harry's friend, British singer James Blunt (C) arrives for the wedding ceremony of Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and US actress Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL AND AFP PHOTO / Odd ANDERSENODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19:  Charles Spencer, 9th Earl Spencer and Karen Spencer arrive at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England.  (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Charles Spencer, 9th Earl Spencer and Karen Spencer arrive at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Getty Images

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19:  Sabrina Dhowre (L) and Idris Elba attend the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales marries Ms. Meghan Markle in a service at St George's Chapel inside the grounds of Windsor Castle. Among the guests were 2200 members of the public, the royal family and Ms. Markle's Mother Doria Ragland.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Sabrina Dhowre (L) and Idris Elba attend the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales marries Ms. Meghan Markle in a service at St George's Chapel inside the grounds of Windsor Castle. Among the guests were 2200 members of the public, the royal family and Ms. Markle's Mother Doria Ragland. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Getty Images

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19:  Rebecca Deacon and Adam Priestley arrive at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England.  (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Rebecca Deacon and Adam Priestley arrive at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Getty Images

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19:  Prince William's private secretary, Miguel Head arrives at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England.  (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Prince William's private secretary, Miguel Head arrives at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Getty Images

Tom Inskip arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

Tom Inskip arrives at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 19, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Wedding. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

PA

Guests begin to arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Guests begin to arrive at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Chris Radburn/PA Wire

PA

Nacho Figueras and his wife Delfina Blaquier, arrive ahead of the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle. Chris Jackson/PA Wire

Nacho Figueras and his wife Delfina Blaquier, arrive ahead of the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle. Chris Jackson/PA Wire

PA

Sir Keith Mills and his wife Maureen Mills arrive at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England.  (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Sir Keith Mills and his wife Maureen Mills arrive at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Getty Images

After an illustrious career, John Cavanagh died on March 24, 2003, aged 88.

Belfast Telegraph