I have lost count of the American TV networks who have called me up over the last few weeks. They seem absolutely obsessed with covering every aspect of William and Kate’s Spring wedding but don’t like some of the palace’s arrangements.
‘Why are you having the wedding at 11.00am?’ asked one U.S producer. “It doesn’t suit us on this side of the Atlantic because that’s 6.00am. in New York and the middle of the night in California.’
I had to gently explain that Buckingham Palace is more concerned about the most appropriate timing for the British public to watch the Prince and his bride make their vows among all the splendid ceremonial.
Every royal wedding I have ever covered has taken place at 11.00am Greenwich Mean Time because it is the most convenient hour for everyone involved, especially palace staff, not forgetting hard-working caterers, cleaners and road-sweepers who’ll be clearing up the streets afterwards.
Then there are the silly, only-in-America questions. Who is the wedding planner? When informed that members of the royal family don’t need wedding planners because the Lord Chamberlain and Master of the Household take care of every detail, I was greeted with disbelief.
‘No, you’re kidding, right? There must be some company organizing the whole shebang.’
My colleague Mark Stewart, four times winner of Royal Photographer of the Year Awards, has also been deluged with requests for his pictures of Kate and William from US TV shows.
Over the past year he has scooped the world by getting exclusive shots of the couple at several friends’ weddings, so his photographs are much in demand.
‘They can’t get enough of Kate and William’, he says. ‘All the American breakfast TV shows are running wedding stories every day. I can’t send over enough to meet their endless orders.’
The way the US TV networks are behaving you would think the Boston Tea Party and the American Revolution never happened. They act as if William was their prince.
Over here it’s quite different. We in the media are keen but not beserk about it. There are really only two big stories that everyone in the British Isles wants to know about. Who is designing Kate’s wedding dress and what will Will and his mates get up to on his stag night?
As for the dress, how I wish Catherine Walker was still here to design it. I don’t think anyone ever made lovelier gowns for Princess Diana.
If Kate gets her way the designer of her fabulous frock will remain a secret until April 29. But I’ll bet William’s farewell to the single state leaks out, if it’s anything like Peter Phillips’ three-day bender on the Isle of Wight.
In the meantime, I keep getting calls from US TV producers who think they know more about what’s happening than we do here.
Perhaps they don’t realise the Queen is approving every teeny detail of the wedding, including the decision to drive to the Abbey in a car herself. And, as we know, the whole wedding party will return to Buckingham Palace in a procession of open carriages.
But I had to smile when I read about a new American nail polish produced to mark the royal wedding. It’s called ‘No more waity, Katy!’