The wedding day of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle is fast approaching, with a ceremony in the historic St George's Chapel at Windsor. But other happy and glorious churches and cathedrals across the UK have also hosted royal weddings through history. Here we take a peek inside.

A Victorian favourite

St George's Chapel has been the scene of numerous royal weddings, especially since the reign of Queen Victoria. Many of her children chose to be married at Windsor, particularly during the Queen’s reclusive widowhood. They included, in 1863, HRH The Prince of Wales (later Edward VII) and HRH Princess Alexandra of Denmark. In 2005, a Service of Prayer and Dedication was held following the marriage of Prince Charles and The Duchess of Cornwall.

St George’s Chapel, Windsor

The royal church

For 1,000 years the 11th century abbey has been a backdrop to royal weddings, coronations and funerals. Many royal weddings have been held at the Abbey during the 20th century. In 1923, The Duke of York (later King George VI) was married to Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon; in 1947, Princess Elizabeth married Prince Philip of Greece; and 2011, Prince William married Kate Middleton.

Westminster Abbey, Westminster

White rose weddings

2,000 years of history have shaped York Minster. Among them are two royal weddings, more than 600 years apart. In 1328 Edward III married Phillippa of Hainault; and, in 1961, The Duke of Kent married Katharine Worsley. After that ceremony up to 20,000 people passed through the Minster in three hours to see the setting of what was dubbed the ‘White Rose Wedding’.

York Minster, York

Our ancient royal seat

The cathedral has a rich history of links with royalty. Winchester was the capital of Anglo-Saxon Wessex, and Old Minster was the burial place of its West Saxon kings. In its 1,500 years of history the cathedral has hosted two lavish royal weddings: in 1403, Henry IV and Joan of Navarre; and in 1554 Mary Tudor and Philip II of Spain. In 1554 the nave was hung with Flemish tapestries, and a 16th century wooden and leather chair Mary Tudor is said to have used is in storage in the cathedral collection.

Winchester Cathedral, Winchester

Heirs to the throne

Think of St Paul's cathedral and royal weddings and most people will conjure up images of Lady Diana Spencer walking down the aisle in 1981. But there was another, a mere 480 years ago. Another royal wedding for the heir to the throne took place at Old St Paul's in 1501 - but one that would never be king. Prince Arthur, eldest son of King Henry VII, married Catherine of Aragon here, but died just six months later.

St Paul's Cathedral, City of London

One final wedding

The Chapel Royal is outstandingly rich, colourful and layered with history. The vaulted ceiling was installed by Henry VIII in the 1530s and is the grand culmination of Tudor opulence at Hampton Court. It was here that in 1543 he married Catherine Parr, in the Queen’s Holy Day Closet which is now the Lady Chapel.

Chapel Royal, Hampton Court Palace

The mother church

The mother church of the Anglican Communion has only witnessed one royal wedding in its 1,400 years of history. In 1236 Henry III married Eleanor of Provence. She was crowned queen at Westminster shortly afterwards in a lavish ceremony.

Canterbury Cathedral, Canterbury

A ruby and a lion

Royal guests at the house have included Edward VI, Elizabeth I and Charles I with his queen, Henrietta Maria. In 1445 Henry VI married Margaret of Anjou here, and although little is known about the ceremony Margaret’s ring was made from a ring of gold ‘garnished with a fair ruby’. The bride also received an unusual wedding present, from a sadly unrecorded donor: a lion, which was duly conveyed to the menagerie at the Tower.

Titchfield Abbey, Hampshire

Inspiring all weddings to come

This small chapel, which seats 100, was once the royal wedding venue of choice, with Queen Anne kickstarting the tradition in 1683. Queen Victoria married Prince Albert here in 1840, and King George V (known as Prince George, Duke of York at the time) followed suit in 1893. Queen Victoria's wedding started many of our traditions, including a white dress and huge cake.

The Chapel Royal, St James Palace

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