Preparations for Princess Eugenie’s nuptials are underway as Windsor gets set to host its second royal wedding of the year in lavish style.
The day promises to be bigger than Harry and Meghan’s showstopping event with 850 guests expected to be in attendance, some 250 more than the aforementioned celebrity couple.
It holds a likeness in other regards too with the public purse stretched once again to cater for a procession and rough sleepers turfed off the street to ensure the television cameras return with polished footage of life on the streets of Britain.
The footage will air just days after new statistics show some at least 449 homeless people have died in the UK over the last year, almost double the number that perished over the four years previous in something John Simpson described as a “deeply shameful” reflection of what we have become as a nation.
Following years of austerity it has become apparent that things are at breaking point in Britain. People working vital public sector jobs have seen their income placed on freeze as the country works to recover from a banking crisis they didn’t cause. Elsewhere food bank use is at record levels and staff at Citizens Advice help someone with bailiff-related problems every three minutes as many people find themselves descending hopelessly into poverty with no lifeline in sight.
Yet there always seems to be money when it comes to looking after the better off. While police officers, teachers and nurses struggle to get a pay rise MPs have seen their income increase 17 per cent during the time the Conservatives have been in government. Elsewhere bankers culpable of contributing to the fall of the financial services sector are earning sums and operating in ways akin to the heady days pre-collapse. To them, it is as if it never happened.
Which makes news that UK taxpayers will have to fork out an additional £2 million for Eugenie’s wedding to Jack Brooksbank all the more difficult to swallow. The pair could have saved the public purse that money by having the wedding closer to home in a church next to the reception venue, but because they opted for Windsor Castle millions of pounds must now be frittered away on extra security measures.
More than 35,000 people have signed a petition by pressure group Republic arguing that it is a waste of money, but in this political climate their views will likely fall on deaf ears. To paraphrase Mary Poppins this is a super lavish frivolous two fingers to the hopeless, and there is little we can do about it.