Ordinary heroes recognised with royal wedding invites as Donald Trump misses out
Harry and Meghan’s guest list will favour friends over politicians.
Community heroes have been named among Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding guests as it emerged US president Donald Trump and predecessor Barack Obama have not been invited.
The American leader and other politicians, both home and abroad, are missing from the guest list as the prince and his bride-to-be have chosen friends, colleagues and those they already know rather than prime ministers and presidents.
Barack Obama and wife Michelle, who struck up a warm relationship with the royal family, particularly Harry, will not attend the couple’s big day on May 19, being staged at St George’s Chapel in the grounds of Windsor Castle.
But it is understood Harry and Meghan will see the couple soon, possibly during an official overseas trip once they are married.
A Kensington Palace spokesman said: “It has been decided that an official list of political leaders – both UK and international – is not required for Prince Harry and Ms Markle’s wedding.
“Her Majesty’s Government was consulted on this decision, which was taken by the Royal Household.”
Prime Minister Theresa May and opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn are also believed to be missing from the guest list.
Members of the public picked to share in the couple’s day, by watching the spectacle from the grounds of Windsor Castle, were revealed earlier and include a 12-year-old schoolgirl caught up in the Manchester Arena bombing.
Amelia Thompson from Dronfield Woodhouse, near Sheffield, has spent a year recovering from the trauma she suffered after witnessing the attack.
She has decided to give her other ticket to grandmother Sharon Goodman, whose 15-year-old granddaughter Olivia Campbell-Hardy died in the bombing.
The youngster said: “I was speechless. I could not respond I was so excited,” and she is now looking forward to buying a new dress for the occasion.
The informality of Harry and Meghan’s 600-strong guest list also reflects the smaller size of their wedding venue, compared to Westminster Abbey which staged the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s royal nuptials in 2011.
The prince is also not expected to become King, unlike older brother William, who invited a large number of politicians, heads of state and other officials to his wedding.
Pamela Anomneze said she felt “excited and overwhelmed” to be one of the chosen guests. She said: “I got an email informing me, and I thought it was an April Fool’s prank.”
The mother-of-three described the honour as “truly unbelievable”, saying the engaged pair are the “world’s most beautiful couple”.
The 52-year-old from Haringey, London, will take her 15-year-old son Jude Anomneze-Collins as her plus one, after he made a heartfelt plea to attend alongside her.
She said: “He used to watch Suits. When I came home and informed him of the invite he was down on his knees begging to go. He said ‘Oh mum, just to get a glimpse of Meghan Markle!'”
She said she may wear a colourful outfit traditional to her native Nigeria, but
will leave the decision up to her colleagues at the Studio 306 Collective, a
social enterprise which helps people with mental health problems.
Kensington Palace announced in March that 1,200 members of the public would be among the crowds allowed into the grounds of Windsor Castle to share in the atmosphere of the royal wedding.
The lucky group were nominated by the nine regional Lord Lieutenant offices after Harry and Meghan asked for those picked to come from a broad range of backgrounds and ages, including young people who have shown strong leadership, and those who have served their communities.
Entrepreneur Rosie Ginday, 34, who set up the social enterprise and baking business Miss Macaroon in Birmingham in 2011, said she was “delighted” to get an invitation, after impressing Harry and Meghan with some of her trainees’ macaroons during their visit to the city in March.
Her organisation reinvests profits into developing disadvantaged young people’s potential, training them as chefs and offering them real world experience.
The qualified pastry chef and former English teacher said: “Harry and Meghan came to Millennium Point (Birmingham), and got to taste our macaroons which was really fun.
“They were both so passionate about meeting all the young girls there and took a real interest.
“They’re accessible as well, and it’s great to have a younger generation of royals showing they do care and they are invested in what young people can do.”