Opinions on the Royal wedding were somewhat divided in the Burt household. Wall-to-wall coverage for the days leading up to the wedding, obscuring world news of hundreds of people dying in the Middle East and American storms, left both of us suffering from ‘Royal Wedding overload’ by Friday.
But while my husband refused to have anything to do with it, I switched on the telly – just for a minute – to see the dress and check out the vows themselves.
I was instantly spellbound and watched the lot. The whole event had a fairytale quality.
Listening to radio discussions afterwards, the wider questions surrounding the monarchy came to the fore.
I don’t subscribe to the sycophancy, but I also found it difficult to accept that we are being ‘infantalised’ by having a monarchy: that we somehow belittle ourselves by elevating them.
It was presented as an ‘either/or’ option: would you rather a monarchy or a presidency, followed by a list of candidates. President Blair? President (Boris) Johnson? Mmmm… maybe not.
I attended two street parties: Our Lady of the Wayside on Thursday and Ulverly Green Road on Friday.
The former had children and parishioners at long, red, white and blue trestles, food, a disco and singing; the latter had a live band, fancy dress competition, best scarecrow (Elvis won), tables groaning with food and neighbours talking, and enjoying being together.
We didn’t feel ‘infantalised’: we just had fun. And we felt a little bit better about ourselves as a nation. That’s good enough for me.