So far, the details surrounding Meghan Markle and Prince Harry‘s upcoming wedding have been mostly shrouded in secrecy. Other than the fact that Markle will break royal protocol to deliver a wedding speech on her own, and some educated guesses at the guest list, not much else is known about the upcoming May 19 event. One thing is for sure, though: Security will be at an all-time high, especially in the wake of Markle’s recent anthrax scare and the racist message she received with it.
Apparently, the cost of the royal wedding could even top $33 million, according to a new report at E! News. That was how much Prince William and Kate Middleton paid for extensive protection back in 2011 for their wedding, which included placing snipers on roofs, crowding the streets with undercover police officers, and conducting investigations months ahead of the event, as E! notes. Considering Markle and Harry have already announced that they’ll be partaking in a 2-mile procession across Windsor, it’s likely they’ll follow suit.
“History has a habit of repeating itself,” Dai Davies, former Head of Royal Protection and Chief Superintendent of the Metropolitan Police Service, told E!. “In the last thousand years there hasn’t been a King or Queen that someone hasn’t tried to murder… Thousands of people will be working on keeping the family and their fans safe. This is a time to be extremely prudent and sensible. Every precaution needs to be taken.”
Part of the issue is that Windsor is “a much harder area to secure than London, which is so much better prepared,” says Davies. “In Windsor, there are shops, buildings, houses, you name it and there is a history of people trying to get into Windsor Castle… The greatest risk comes from those people that we call ‘fixated’, i.e., mentally ill people, who could think, for whatever reason, that a white prince shouldn’t marry a black woman. Clearly 99 percent of the population are deliriously happy about that but you could get a small right-wing fascist group who may object to it, so that adds to your problem. I don’t know how they are going to secure it [Windsor] to the level that I would want, but clearly, much wiser people are now doing the job and I’m sure they’ll come up with a plan.”
Despite the amount of security that will be involved, though—which Markle has become accustomed to as she’s currently being guarded 24-hours-a-day—it’s likely that it won’t faze the bride and groom. “You can’t turn the palaces into prisons,” Davies says. “William and Harry have grown up with protection all their lives so they are used to this. And for Meghan, well, she has been going out with Harry for quite a while. She’s a very bright and intelligent lady so I have no doubt she is taking to all of this like a duck to water.”