Revealed: £30million ‘ring of steel’ will protect Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding with barriers, vehicle checks, snipers and airport-style scans for guests
More than 100,000 people are expected to visit Windsor, Berkshire, on May 19
All visitors entering inner area will pass through airport-style security scanners
Big security boundary mounted around Windsor Castle and St George’s Chapel
Bag searches will take place by police along with checks on vans and lorries
A £30million ‘ring of steel’ will surround Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding including barriers, vehicle checks, snipers and airport-style scanners.
More than 100,000 people are expected to visit Windsor, Berkshire, for the big day on May 19 – and they should expect to be stopped and searched by police.
Thames Valley Police say the operation is likely to be the biggest in its history as they gradually build up the security in the city over the next seven weeks.
All visitors entering the inner area to watch the royal carriage procession through the town will have to pass through airport-style security scanners.
A huge security boundary will be mounted around the castle and St George’s Chapel, where the wedding ceremony is taking place in front of 600 guests.
Bag searches will take place along with checks on vans and lorries, while ‘hostile vehicle mitigation’ barriers aim to prevent vehicle-based terror attacks.
Harry and Meghan’s wedding by numbers
- 100,000 people in Windsor for the big day
- £30million cost of ‘ring of steel’ security
- 600 guests for service at St George’s Chapel
- 4,200 Thames Valley Police officers all have to leave canceled
- £20million security cost of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding in April 2011
- £12million equivalent cost today of Prince Charles and Diana Spencer’s wedding in 1981
Police will also use a network of automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras to check for stolen or suspect vehicles on criminal databases.
All leave for the 4,200-strong police force has been cancelled as they work with Scotland Yard, which will provide security for the royals inside the castle.
Dog and mounted patrols will be on patrol, specialist firearms units are being brought in and marine officers will carry out searches along the River Thames.
The mounted section, roads policing unit and the National Police Air Service will also be joining in the security operation over the coming weeks.
US actress Meghan has already been assigned a royal bodyguard from the Metropolitan Police’s Royalty and Specialist Protection Command.
It has been confirmed that the royal family will pay for the wedding, including the church service, the music, the flowers and the reception.
But taxpayers are expected to pick up the bill for security at the event, as they did for Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding in April 2011.
Then, it was estimated that the total cost for the 5,000 police officers and the clear-up operation on the streets afterwards was as high as £20million.
In comparison, the 1981 wedding between Prince Charles and Diana Spencer was estimated to have cost £4milllion – which equates to around £12million today.
Thames Valley Police assistant chief constable David Hardcastle, strategic commander for the wedding, said: ‘We are proud to police the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead.
‘The force has a long history of policing Royal events from the annual Windsor Garter Ceremony to state visits and more recently Her Majesty the Queen’s 90th birthday.
‘The wedding of Prince Harry and Ms Markle is no exception. We are working with our partners, local businesses and the community to deliver a safe, secure and happy event for everyone.’
A police spokesman added that the public ‘should be reassured and not alarmed’ by the security measures, which are intended to ‘keep people safe’.
British Transport Police will be patrolling train stations and carriages, while Surrey Police will also provide support to Thames Valley Police.
Hundreds of troops will perform ceremonial duties on the wedding day. They have a special relationship with the prince, who served in the Army for a decade.
Household Cavalry troopers in their gleaming breast plates and plumed helmets will line the staircase at the ceremony at St George’s Chapel.
Streets within the precincts of the castle will be lined by members of the Windsor Castle Guard from 1st Battalion Irish Guards.
Also involved will be personnel from the Royal Navy Small Ships and Diving, Royal Marines, 3 Regiment Army Air Corps, the Royal Gurkha Rifles and RAF Honington.
Musical support will be provided by the Band of the Irish Guards. Trumpeters and a captain’s escort from the Household Cavalry will also provide ceremonial support.
Harry was deployed twice to Afghanistan during his Army career before leaving in 2015 after rising to the rank of captain.
Ahead of the wedding, Harry and Meghan are to visit Bath to attend the UK team trials for the Invictus Games on April 6.
The pair, who are touring the UK ahead of their wedding, will watch competitors as they try out on the athletics track and field.
Source: DAILYMAIL MAILONLINE
Tags: Meghan Markle, Prince Harry, Harry and Meghan, Royal Wedding, Wedding Preparation, Wedding News, Royal Wedding, Harry Wedding, Meghan Wedding, British Royal Family, British Royal News, British News, Royal News, Prince William, Kate Middleton, Catherine Duchess of Cambridge
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