Republicans insisted on a truncated process and timetable to hear the sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
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The royal wedding ceremony of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry takes place tomorrow, Saturday 19 May, at midday. The ceremony will be watched by Harry and Meghan’s family and friends at St George’s Chapel in Windsor; it will be followed by a carriage procession and two receptions, including a private one at Frogmore House in the grounds of Windsor Castle. Read on for the full schedule of the day The Prince and Ms Markle have broken tradition by choosing to hold their wedding on a Saturday, as royal weddings usually take place during the week The wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge was held on a Friday and the wedding of the Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales was held on a Wednesday; on both occasions the public were given an extra bank holiday. This time there is no need for a day off, and people around the country can watch the ceremony live on TV from their living rooms. Or, if they prefer, head to a pub or bar – licensing hours have been extended until 1am in the early hours of Saturday morning, and on the day of the wedding itself. WATCH: How Diana, the in-laws and Prince Louis will fit into the Royal Wedding The St George’s Chapel service The service will take place at St George’s Chapel in the grounds of Windsor Castle, which last hosted a royal wedding in May 2008 when Peter Phillips – son of The Princess Royal – married Autumn Kelly. Prince Edward also wed Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, there in June 1999; plus Prince Harry was christened there in 1984 by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Robert Runcie. Members of the public who have been invited to watch from the grounds of Windsor Castle will begin to arrive from 9am. Guests will arrive between 9.30am and 11am by coach. Two driving routes have been suggested, with guests required to meet at the Windsor Farm Shop – founded in 2001 after the Duke of Edinburgh had an idea to support local businesses by selling produce. Wedding at Windsor Castle There, three miles away from the venue, guests will be put through security checks and asked to show identification; they will then be ushered onto buses to travel to Windsor Castle, where they will alight at the castle’s Round Tower and enter the chapel through the south door. Instructions reportedly sent to the guests ban cameras and bulky bags, adding that guests will be asked to “surrender mobile telephones and any devices used for image capture”. The rules further specify that guests should not wear medals, in a list of suggestions about accessories that includes: “No swords.” At 11.20am, members of the Royal Family will arrive and enter the chapel through the Galilee Porch. Some will arrive in state car from the Royal Mews, including Bentleys, Rolls-Royces and Daimlers. A view of the Quire in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle, where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will have their wedding service Credit: WPA Pool Prince Harry and his brother and best man the Duke of Cambridge are expected to arrive at the chapel’s west steps at 11.45am. It is assumed they will enter the grounds on foot, giving Prince Harry the opportunity to walk past the crowds in the grounds. He will pass 200 representatives from charities he is associated with, who are expected to gather in the horseshoe cloister at the bottom of the steps. The Queen will be the final member of the Royal Family to arrive for the service, and is expected at 11.55am. The service will begin at 12pm, with Ms Markle due to arrive at the chapel’s west steps at 11.59am. She has chosen her mother, Doria, to travel with her to the wedding, travelling from their overnight accommodation to St George’s Chapel by car. When the car stops at the castle, her mother will exchange places with the bridesmaids and pageboys. Ms Ragland will enter the chapel by the Galilee Porch. Royal wedding countdown in pictures as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s preparations begin The decision breaks with UK tradition, which usually sees the bride travel with her father before he gives her away in the wedding ceremony. Instead, Ms Markle wanted to include both parents in her wedding day. However, Ms Markle has now confirmed her father will not be attending ceremony. In a statement issued through Kensington Palace, Meghan Markle said: “Sadly, my father will not be attending our wedding. I have always cared for my father and hope he can be given the space he needs to focus on his health. “I would like to thank everyone who has offered generous messages of support. Please know how much Harry and I look forward to sharing our special day with you on Saturday.” Initially, it was planned that Meghan’s father would meet her at the chapel’s west door before walking her down the aisle. However it has been announced that Prince Charles will walk the bride down the aisle. Ms Markle will walk the first half of the St George’s Chapel aisle alone, surrounded by young page boys and bridesmaids but without anyone by her side. The most beautiful royal wedding dresses of all time At the Quire, which effectively marks the second half of the aisle, Ms Markle will be met by the Prince of Wales, her future father-in-law, who will take her arm for the final steps. The ceremony will omit the traditional moment of “giving away”, where the presiding Archbishop asks: “Who giveth this woman to be married to this man?” Ms Markle is understood to have asked the Prince of Wales to accompany her after her father, Thomas Markle, told her he was unable to fly to the UK. The traditional ceremony will be conducted by the Dean of Windsor, The Rt Revd. David Conner while the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, will officiate as the couple make their marriage vows. Under the guidance of Harry’s private secretary, Edward Lane Fox, the Lord Chamberlain’s Office is dealing with the ceremonial aspects of the day. It is assumed that Ms Markle is unlikely to opt to obey the prince and will probably choose the Series One (1966) Book of Common Prayer ceremony, just as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge did. This allows the bride to drop the phrases “obey him” and “serve him” from the religious proceedings. Harry must decide whether to wear a wedding ring; William does not wear one. The regiments Prince Harry served with in Afghanistan will also have a “special place” during the ceremony. Household Cavalry troopers will line the staircase at St George’s Chapel, while streets within the precincts of the castle will be lined by members of the Windsor Castle Guard from 1st Battalion Irish Guards, and by Armed Forces personnel from the Royal Navy Small Ships and Diving, which has the Prince as Commodore-in-Chief, and the Royal Marines, where he is Captain General. The 3 Regiment Army Air Corps, where Prince Harry served as an Apache Pilot in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, will also be represented, as well as The Royal Gurkha Rifles, his comrades in Afghanistan in 2007, and RAF Honington, where he is Honorary Air Commandant. Royal wedding | Read more The procession around Windsor The service will end at 1pm and the newlyweds will leave the chapel at the west steps, before leaving the castle by carriage. Prince Harry and Ms Markle will be driven for two miles along Castle Hill, the High Street and into Windsor town centre before returning along the beautiful, tree-lined Long Walk for their reception. Kensington Palace has said: “Prince Harry and Ms Markle are very much looking forward to this short journey which they hope will be a memorable moment for everyone who has gathered together in Windsor to enjoy the atmosphere of this special day.” The procession is expected to take 25 minutes, 10 minutes longer than a similar procession taken by Edward and Sophie in 1999. The best photo opportunity will be the West Steps of St George’s Chapel, when the bride and groom and their families emerge after the service. If you are lucky enough to be in Windsor on the day, head for the grass of the Horseshoe Cloisters opposite those steps for the view. The Ascot Landau open carriage stands in the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace in London Credit: Victoria Jones The newlyweds will make their journey through Windsor in an open-topped Ascot Landau carriage, Kensington Palace has confirmed. It is the same carriage Prince Harry used in the procession at the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, when he was surrounded by small bridesmaids and page boys. Crown Equerry Colonel Toby Browne, who runs the royal mews where the carriage was selected, said: “The fair weather option, the Ascot Landau, it was selected because it’s a wonderfully bright, small, lovely carriage. Very easy for people to see, the passengers can sit up quite high – so there’s lots of visibility for everybody. “It was built in 1883, it’s one of five that we have, most of them are down in Windsor, we always keep one in London for occasions.” If it rains on the wedding day, the wet weather option is the Scottish State Coach. Built in 1830, a new top was created in 1969 with large windows and a partial glass roof, to allow spectators to see the passengers. Six horses, Windsor Greys, will be included the procession ride. A team of four, Milford Haven, Plymouth and father and son Storm and Tyrone, will pull the Landau and two others – Sir Basil and Londonderry – will be outriders. All have been involved in high profile events before, including the Spanish state visit last year, Royal Ascot, Trooping the Colour, the State Opening of Parliament and the Lord Mayor’s Show. Map of the route After The Wedding Route The receptions at St George’s Hall and Frogmore House They will be waved off by members of both families and the congregation will leave the chapel to see the newlyweds leave, before going to St George’s Hall for the lunchtime reception hosted by the Queen. While Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are touring Windsor, guests from the congregation will wait for the happy couple in St George’s Hall to celebrate the first of the day’s two receptions. This will be hosted by the Queen, will take place during the afternoon and will be attended by all guests who were invited to the service. Invitations have been posted to 600 lucky guests; royal sources have said the guest list has been restricted to those who have a direct relationship with the couple, both because St George’s Chapel is relatively small and because the prince is not in the direct line of succession. Some members of the public have received an invitation to wait in the grounds outside the chapel to watch the bride and groom and their wedding guests arrive and leave. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in the grounds of Frogmore House Credit: REUTERS From 7pm, a select 200 close friends will attend an after party hosted by the Prince of Wales at Frogmore House, Windsor. Half a mile away from Windsor Castle, the 17th century Grade I country house is owned by the Crown Estate and is part of the Frogmore Estate on the ground of the Home Park. Prince Harry and Ms Markle’s engagement photos were taken in the grounds of Frogmore House. The images were taken by photographer Alexi Lubomirski, who has also been chosen to take the photographs on the wedding day. Lubomirski, the British-born son of Peruvian-English mother and a Polish-French father, also happens to be a Prince himself: his full title is His Serene Highness Prince Alexi Lubomirski. It is expected that member of the Royal family, Ms Markle’s family and intimate friends of both the newlyweds will be at the evening reception – although Princess Charlotte and Prince George will no doubt have been put to bed after their big day in the limelight. Royal wedding | Read more Will Prince William be at the FA Cup? It has been announced that Prince William will be Prince Harry’s best man. The decision means the Duke, who is President of the Football Association, will not attend the FA Cup final, which is happening on the same day as the wedding. Scheduled to start at 17:15, the FA Cup final will see Chelsea and Manchester United go head to head for the title. Windsor Castle is about an hour’s drive from Wembley Stadium, which would have taken the Duke of Cambridge away from the proceedings for at least two hours. Asked how he felt about being chosen as Prince Harry’s best man, the Duke said: “It feels great. [I am] thrilled and delighted obviously. Revenge is sweet. I’ll be looking forward to it.” The Duke’s own stag do is reported to have been held on a Devon estate, Hartland Abbey, where he and close friends indulged in drinking, clay pigeon shooting, surfing and games. Prince Harry went on to tease his brother mercilessly during a none-the-less heartfelt best man’s speech at the wedding reception, allegedly wearing a fez, mimicking the lovestruck conversations between a young Kate and William, and ridiculing his bald spot.
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As they say their vows in front of the watching world, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will have a lifetime of Royal tours ahead of them as a married couple. And it seems they will waste no time getting started. Kensington Palace announced in February that the newlyweds will undertake a tour of Windsor as their first trip as man and wife, to greet well-wishers who are expected to turn out from all over the world to see them. Here’s everything you need to know about how to watch it and where to stand. Why will there be a procession? Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will undertake a carriage ride through Windsor straight after the St George’s Chapel ceremony and before their reception. The journey is designed to allow members of the public to see the newlyweds in person while they are still dressed in their finery, in what is likely to be one of the most photographed occasions of the year. Such a display of ceremonial prowess has been used by kings and queens for centuries to celebrate as much as it has been used to impress their subjects and foreign powers. Be that with gun salutes, marching guards, or golden carriages. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge during their wedding carriage procession in 2011 Credit: Matt Cardy/AP There is no doubt that this royal wedding will pack a punch, just like Queen Victoria’s marriage to Albert which featured a 21-gun salute as she embarked on her carriage procession at St Jame’s Palace. But it was not until King George VI’s marriage to Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon in 1923 that royal weddings became public affairs; they were married to great fanfare in order to lift the spirits of the nation after World War One (and royal weddings have been lavish events ever since). What time will the procession begin? At 1pm, immediately after the service, Prince Harry and Ms Markle will leave Windsor Castle by carriage. They will be driven along Castle Hill, the High Street and into Windsor town centre before returning along the beautiful, tree-lined Long Walk for their reception. The whole procession is expected to take just 25 minutes. Meanwhile, guests from the congregation will wait for the happy couple in St George’s Hall, to celebrate the first of the day’s two receptions. Map of the route Wedding route Where is best to stand? The Long Walk To see the newlyweds up close, the best positions will be on the 2.64 mile stretch that rolls from Snow Hill to the gates of Windsor Castle. This is known as the ‘Long Walk’. The length of this section will allow thousands of spectators to catch a glimpse of Harry and Meghan in the final minutes of the procession. There will be events on the Long Walk throughout the day, with live screens showing footage from the ceremony. Snow Hill On the hilltop above the procession route, the eagle-eyed can find a sweeping aerial view of the carriage ride. Snow Hill will offer fantastic views of the final moments and will be a popular picnic spot on the day, so get there early to reserve a spot. According to legend, King Henry VIII sat on Snow Hill to wait for news of the execution of his second wife, Queen Anne Boleyn. A precedent that has fortunately not been followed since. Prince Edward and his bride Sophie Rhys-Jones pass the crowd inside the grounds of Windsor Castle in an open carriage in 1999 Credit: PA The town centre Royal fans can also mingle with the residents of Windsor as the carriage passes through the streets of the town centre. Although you should probably arrive at the crack of dawn if you’re after a front-row High Street viewing spot – it’s bound to get busy. With Windsor dressed in bunting and ceremonial decorations – and bursting with local street entertainment – the town will provide a feast for the eyes. Expect big screens showing live footage of the wedding; plus an array of food stalls and general facilities will be available at both the Long Walk and Alexandra Gardens. Spectators can also line the entirety of the procession route, on Castle Hill, High Street, Sheet Street, Kings Road, Albert Road and the Long Walk. Disabled viewing spots will be available at the junctions of Victoria Street and Albert Road. The council has advised that visitors should not bring tents, but foldable chairs and umbrellas are fine. Also look out for the weather forecast on the day, and prepare for large crowds with plenty of food supplies, water, and sun cream. Further information will be published on the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead Council website. What about parking? Of the three parking options on offer, most motorists should make use of the 6,000 designated parking spaces available at the Review Ground, Windsor Great Park, which is located to the south of Windsor Castle and the town centre. Parking tickets must be booked in advance for a price of £30. These are being allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis. With wedding invitations being sent to more than 2,000 members of the public and many more expected to watch the ceremony on the town’s live screens, it’s a good idea get these sooner rather than later. This car park opens at 4am and closes at 10pm. Though it is next to the Long Walk, motorists will have to take a 25 minute stroll to the nearest spectator spots. The second parking option is provided by Windsor Racecourse’s ‘Park and Float’ service, which must also be booked in advance. There are 3,000 spots available for £30, as well as weekend parking packages, and the opportunity to journey into the heart of Windsor on a return boat trip for £10. The third car park can be found at The Windsor Boy’s School, where motorists can park on a first-come-first basis on the day without pre-booking. This is expected to fill-up early in the morning. Royal wedding | Read more How will local roads be affected? To accommodate the large number of attendees at Windsor’s public events over the weekend, there will also be a series of road closures, beginning with a 9am – 2pm closure of the procession route on Thursday May 17. Then, from 10pm on Friday May 18 and until late on Saturday May 19, road closures will affect the procession route and surrounding roads. During this time Windsor residents will be able to leave the road closure area, but only emergency services vehicles can enter. Access to the car park on the Long Walk will not be affected by the road closures in place, at any time. Road closures beyond the procession route will take effect from 6am on Saturday May 19; these include Maidenhead Road, Clarence Road, Alma Road, St Leonards Road, Frances Road, Barry Avenue, and Datchet Road. Local authorities suggest that you check this live map of road closures to check what time the roads reopen from Saturday evening onwards. What are my options by train? Rail operators will be running a bumper service on the wedding to help everyone get in and out of the celebrations at Windsor, which is expected to be one of the largest one-day events ever held on the local rail network. Both Great Western and South Western will be doubling the number of trains to 6,000, with trains running up to four times an hour from London Waterloo and Slough. These services will also benefit from extra carriages to keep up with the expected demand, given that some of the 100,000 expected visitors will arrive by public transport. Windsor is served by two train stations that are within minutes of the town centre and Windsor Castle, making the railway a reliable option for getting to the Royal wedding celebrations: Windsor and Eton Central and Windsor and Eton Riverside. Queuing systems are likely to be in place at London Waterloo, Slough, Staines, and Windsor, whilst ‘park and walk’ and ‘park and glide’ bus services will help people get into town. Great Western Railway services connect Windsor and Eton station to South Wales and the West of England, as well as Reading and Oxford. The journey from Reading or Oxford takes around 30 – 50 minutes and 50 – 75 minutes respectively, with a change required at Slough. Cardiff and Swansea are around two and a half hours away from Windsor, requiring changes at Reading and then Slough. London is connected to Windsor via the direct Waterloo to Windsor and Eton Riverside service, which takes one hour. Travellers have been advised not to take the London Paddington – Slough route, in order to ease rail congestion around Windsor. From the Midlands, take a Cross Country service from Birmingham New Street to Reading, and then change at Slough for the Eton Riverside station. This takes around two and a half hours. Train services from the North require changes at London terminals. Almost five hours of train travel await any royal super-fans making their way from Newcastle. Because it is such a huge event, it is wise to make travel plans ahead of time – so make ticket bookings and travel arrangements well before the big day. Up to date advice on the best routes and how to pre-book your tickets, can be found at: for Great Western Railway here and South Western Railway here. Royal wedding: the best hotels for celebrating Prince Harry’s and Meghan Markle’s big day Are there buses? There will be a designated pick up and drop off point on the wedding day at King Edward VII Hospital, St Leonards Road. This will be the termination point for buses towards Windsor, as well as local routes. A full timetable of buses is available at the Royal Borough website, and more information on transport and bus alterations can be found here. Staying in Windsor Hotels, B&Bs and guesthouses will be bursting at the seams, so expect no empty hotel rooms in town for the duration of the wedding weekend. Royal fans had only a few hours to book the local accommodation offerings before rooms ran out after the announcement that Windsor would play host for the big day. Many residents and visitors will no doubt find a solution via room sharing service AirBnb, with the average price of a room around Windsor currently standing at £321 for Friday night and £286 for the Saturday night. Such prices look like a bargain, with some of the most expensive hotel rooms in Windsor going for up to £10,000. Alternative locations with more ‘last-minute’ availability include Heathrow, Bracknell and Weybridge. The council also suggests that anyone wanting help to find accommodation can contact the Royal Windsor Information Centre on 01753 743907 or by emailing: windsor.accommodation@rbwm. gov.uk. Royal wedding processions in history The monarchy has embarked on grand processions from coronations, marriages, funerals and other state occasions since the 15th century. Each year, a carriage procession carries the Queen to the State Opening of Parliament and the races at Ascot, although royal weddings and coronations are arguably the grandest occasions. The last royal couple to undertake a carriage procession in Windsor was Prince Edward and Sophie Rhys-Jones – now the Earl and Countess of Wessex – after their wedding in St George’s Chapel in 1999. Prince Edward and Sophie Rhys-Jones pictured in their carriage after their wedding in 1999 Credit: EPA It was the biggest occasion in the Berkshire town since since the funeral of King George VI in 1952. More recently, the newly-wed Duke and Duchess of Cambridge travelled through Westminster in a 1902 State Landau after their 2011 wedding, waving at thousands of well-wishers who had packed the streets to catch a glimpse of the happy couple. It’s possible Harry and Meghan could use the same carriage. Steeped in history, the carriage was specifically built for King Edward VII in 1902 and is usually used by the Queen to meet foreign heads of state when they arrive on state visits to Britain. The Prince and Princess of Wales used it to travel back from St Paul’s Cathedral after their 1981 royal wedding, as did the Duke and Duchess of York in 1986. It was also used by the Queen during her Silver Wedding anniversary celebrations in 1972 and in her Silver and Diamond Jubilees in 1977 and 2012.
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A Japanese worker has been reprimanded by her boss for “selfishly breaking the rules” after she became pregnant before it was her “turn”, according to media reports. The woman was working at a private childcare centre in Aichi prefecture, north Japan, when she found out she was pregnant. However, the timing reportedly clashed with “shifts” drawn by the childcare centre director, which listed when female staff were allowed to marry and have children. The plight of the woman, who has not been identified, highlights the unsettling practice of some Japanese companies dictating when female staff are allowed to marry and have children, depending on their level of seniority. Her experiences came to light after her husband, aged 28, wrote a letter outlining their plight to Mainich Shimbun, one of Japan’s leading newspapers. Yuka Ogata was banned from feeding her baby in the Kumamoto City council chamber earlier this year in another blow to maternity rights Credit: KYODO/ REUTERS Describing how his wife felt “glum and anxious” after finding out she was pregnant, the husband wrote: “The director at the child care center where she works had determined the order in which workers could get married or pregnant, and apparently there was an unspoken rule that one must not take their ‘turn’ before a senior staff member…” The couple formally met with the director to apologise about the pregnancy in person, but the husband claimed that his wife has since been “chided” for “selfishly” breaking the rules of the child care center. He added: “Childcare providers sacrifice their own children to care for the children of others. It is a noble profession that nurtures children who will forge the future of this country. “I respect my wife for her commitment to her profession, and continue to encourage her. The conditions of those working to nurture and care for children are evidence of a backward country.” Why has a generation given up on having children? The case has prompted a flood of support in Japan, a nation famed for both its shrinking birth rate and a chronic shortage of public childcare establishments. Many commentators were critical of the nursery, claiming such rules are a violation of human rights – although some were sympathetic to the challenges faced by childcare centres due to widespread staffing shortages. Japanese women have long had a tough time in the workplace, due to widespread gender discrimination, with the nation slipping to 114th place out of 144 countries in last year’s World Economic Forum global gender equality rankings. Maternity harassment – known as “matahara” in Japan – is also a major issue, with a 2015 government survey revealing that half of the nation’s working women suffered some kind of harassment after becoming pregnant, with one in five dismissed from their job. Japan is placed 114 of 144 in the World Economic Forum’s global gender equality rankings Credit: ISSEI KATO/ REUTERS The practice of telling female employees exactly when they are allowed to have children – and when they cannot – is reportedly not confined to the childcare industry in Japan. Another woman, aged 26, from Tokyo also reportedly spoke out about how a female supervisor at a cosmetics-related company told her she would not be allowed to have a child until she was around 35. She reportedly received a document detailing childbirth and childrearing schedules which was circulated among 22 female colleagues via email, with the warning: “Selfish behaviour will be subject to punishment.” The married woman, who has fertility issues, told Mainichi Shimbun: “I already have trouble getting pregnant. How are they going to take responsibility if I put off getting pregnant and lose my chances to have children altogether?” The outdated postwar concept of “gendered division of labour” still lingers in many Japanese companies, according to Dr Brigitte Steger, an expert on modern Japanese studies at Cambridge University. Generations apart | How pregnancy advice has changed “The term matahara is used frequently,” she told the Telegraph. “Women are being harassed for being selfish for taking time out to have children or look after them and for being inconsiderate towards their fellow employees – while women are also criticised for being selfish and not having children.” Referring to the prime minister Shinzo Abe’s so-called policies of “womenomics”, she added: “The main aim of this politics is to allow more women to combine career with having children, encouraging fathers’ involvement in childcare, allowing maternity and paternity leave, providing more childcare facilities, etc. “But there are no real structural changes and industries have not all changed their attitudes and demands towards their workforce.”
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