Royal wedding could boost Suffolk’s economy

PRINCE William’s wedding could boost the region’s economy as a ‘feel-good factor’ spreads across the county, it has been claimed.

The Prince’s engagement to his his long-term partner Kate Middleton was formally announced by the Prince of Wales yesterday.

Dr Peter Funnell, president of the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, said: “The chamber is delighted by the news of the engagement of Prince William and Kate Middleton.

“A royal marriage is always a cause for celebration and I would expect the ceremony in 2011 will both lift the spirits and provide a much needed and significant boast to the Suffolk economy”

Amid mounting speculation, a statement from Clarence House yesterday announced Prince William and Miss Middleton had become engaged on a private holiday in Kenya last month.

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The wedding will take place in London in the spring or summer next year.

Prince William has told The Queen and other close members of his family and also sought the permission of Miss Middleton’s father, the statement said.

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James Berresford, VisitEngland chief executive, said the wedding will give England the chance to promote its heritage and history as the eyes of the World turn towards the country.

Keith Brown, chief executive of East of England tourism, said: “Anything like this has to be good news.

“People from the commonwealth countries and the United States really like the royals.

“There’s no doubt it is a great boost to tourism generally.”

Prince William met Miss Middleton at St Andrews University in 2001 and, despite a brief spell apart in 2007, the pair have been inseperable ever since.

The prince is said to have proposed to Miss Middleton with an engagement ring which belonged to his mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.

Debbie Reeder from Bury St Edmunds Chamber of Commerce, said a royal wedding could provide a much-needed boost in times of economic strife.

“It is something to look forward to,” she said. “There is such a feel-good factor to it.

“Everyone will have an interest in it.”

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