It takes a lot to secure a high-profile wedding, and Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s big day could cost quite a fortune in terms of security. While most royal wedding details have been kept in utmost secrecy, experts are certain of one thing: security will be topnotch, particularly in the aftermath of the anthrax scare and racist threat that targeted the actress last week.
Given the large crowd witnessing the event and the heavy VIP list that consists of powerful figures and A-list personalities, the ceremony is an attraction for chaos if not handled properly. As a matter of fact, Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding security in 2011 added a whopping $33 million to their total bill. According to E! News, the elaborate security system involved undercover police on the ground and snipers positioned on rooftops. Prior to the wedding day, security personnel had to do an extensive investigation on threats or potential threats.
Although Harry and Meghan’s St. George’s Chapel wedding is relatively smaller in comparison to William and Kate’s nuptials in Westminster Abbey, and will not be a full state event, unlike his big brother’s wedding, security will still be on high alert on May 19.
The anthrax scare that hit the royal family last week is also expected to drive organizers to tighten security during the event.
On February 12, a package was intercepted at St. James’ Palace in central London that contained a suspicious white powder substance enclosed in a letter addressed to Markle. The white powder was later declared by experts as harmless and “non-suspicious.” Nevertheless, authorities treated the incident as a “racist hate crime” against the Suits actress.
A similar package was sent to the House of Parliament on February 13. Further investigations have commenced to determine if the same entities are responsible for both letters.
The wedding day itinerary for the future Duke and Duchess of Sussex also requires security to be on constant lookout. One of the highlights of the event is the two-mile procession involving the newlywed couple. The processional will go through the streets of Windsor, where they will be greeted by thousands of well-wishers and spectators.
Dai Davies, former Head of Royal Protection and Chief Superintendent of the Metropolitan Police Service, said that Windsor is harder to secure compared to other areas in London because there a lot of shops, buildings, and houses in the vicinity. The greatest risk, Davies said, comes from people who are “fixated” or mentally ill.
Markle’s union with a member of the British royal family has been subjected to racial undertones ever since they came out in public. This makes her wedding a bigger security concern compared to Kate’s because anti-women and racist groups might attempt to cause a commotion.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are set to marry on May 19, 2018, at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor.