LONDON (CBS/AP) — Palace officials will offer live streaming of the April 29 royal wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton on the royal channel on YouTube.
The four-hour live Internet coverage will include the ceremony at Westminster Abbey, the procession to Buckingham Palace, and the newlyweds’ appearance on the palace balcony for an expected first public kiss. William’s press office will also provide a live blog providing commentary and historical information as well as additional footage.
“The couple wish to strike a balance between a day that is sacred and intimate and a day that will be a cause for global celebration,” a St. James’s Palace spokesman said Tuesday, declining to be identified because of palace policy. “To that end, they want the wedding to be as accessible to as many people as possible and that’s why they are communicating in this way.”
Officials said the couple have taken a hands-on approach the wedding planning.
“William and Catherine have thoroughly enjoyed the process of creating their special day. They have been responsible for everything from the smallest detail, such as the reception canapes, to the big decisions like the carriages,” he added.
Officials said this will be the first time YouTube has run a live blog alongside a live stream for an event.
The palace also plans to post addition royal wedding-related photos on Flickr leading up to the wedding, and expand its coverage on the Official Royal Wedding website, which has seen more than 8 million page views since its launch.
An official souvenir program will be produced for sale to crowds lining the parade route. It will cost 2 pounds ($3.20).
The program will include Middleton’s new coat of arms, which uses an acorn to symbolize strength and continuity.
The coat of arms, unveiled Tuesday, was approved by Thomas Woodcock, the garter king of arms who advises Queen Elizabeth II on the granting of coats of arms and other ceremonial and heraldic matters.
“I think that there’s a tremendous interest in roots and family history and it is something you can pass on to your children which they’re not taxed on,” said Woodcock. “And it is a mark for a family which will carry on for centuries.”
The coat of arms displays three acorn sprigs that represent the three Middleton children — Kate, Pippa and James — and reflects the many oak trees in the English countryside village of Bucklebury where they live. The coat of arms also includes chevrons that represents hills and mountains in a reference to the outdoor activities the family enjoys.
Officials said Carole and Michael Middleton, the bride’s parents, and the rest of the family helped design the new coat of arms.
“While its purpose is to provide a traditional heraldic identity for Catherine as she marries into the royal family, the intent was to represent the whole Middleton family together, their home and aspects of what they enjoy,” said Woodcock.
Woodcock said after the royal wedding, Kate Middleton will place her family’s coat of arms next to those of Prince William in what is known as “an impaled Coat of Arms.”
This will require a royal warrant from the queen, he said.
Royal wedding fans do not have to wait until the big day to “attend” the wedding. A video guest book has just been opened on The Royal Channel for anyone in the YouTube community to upload messages of congratulations, inspiration or well wishes to the happy couple.
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