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London welcomes masses with royal wedding campsite

Text by Katherine THOMPSON

Latest update : 2011-04-28

Tourists have descended on London in droves for the Royal Wedding, all looking to take part in the celebrations. And for those looking for cheap accommodation? A campsite in the heart of the city, of course.

When you think of 'London' and 'the royal wedding', camping does not automatically spring to mind. But in the bustling south-west London neighbourhood of Clapham, an enormous campsite called 'Camp Royale' has been erected. It is camping, but not as we know it.

Clapham Common tube station.

The campsite has been set up to accommodate those traveling from across the UK and around the world who want to take part in the royal wedding celebrations. The campsite also helps those who might be put off visiting the capital for the festivities due to the astronomical hotel prices in London. Clapham Common, which is right in the heart of the popular and trendy neighbourhood of Clapham, is an iconic park, where concerts and festivals are frequently held during the summer months.

With the world's press descending on London as well as tourists, the 'Camp Royale' site early Thursday afternoon was more like the press pen at a major news event than a campsite. The campsite had just opened, and the rather excited early arrivals were delighted by all the media attention.
Lisa Harrison and Dennis Hunt agree that 'Will and Kate'are “more normal” than the rest of the royal family.

Camper Lisa Harrison, who was wearing a giant 'Kate hearts Will' jumper, said with a big beam that she was, “enjoying all the attention”. Lisa was also sporting a replica of the engagement ring that Prince William gave Kate Middleton. Traveling down from the Northern English town of Leicester this morning, Lisa was with her boyfriend Dennis Hunt. Dennis stated, with a good humoured roll of his eyes, that he was, “reluctantly dragged along”. Both, however, agreed that they were enthusiastic about the royal wedding as Will and Kate (as they are called in the UK) are “more normal” than the rest of the royal family.

Cassie and Leila Reynolds-Araji are enthused about what they described as a “once in a lifetime event”.

This point was echoed by sisters Cassie and Leila Reynolds-Araji, who were also enthused that the wedding was a “once in a lifetime event” and said they wanted to enjoy the atmosphere. Both declared themselves to be “very excited”, and reported that their Iranian relatives living in the USA were equally as thrilled and would likely get up early to watch the event on TV at home in Los Angeles. Interestingly, both sisters said their enthusiasm for the event had a lot to do with the constant bad news in the media about the economy and events around the world, and that this event was a pure and simple fun story that everyone could enjoy.

Liz and Helen Leg, a mother and daughter from Suffolk, in the south of England, said that their visit was due to the daughter Helen having met the Queen at the Golden Jubilee when she visited a town near their home. As a result, the daughter is now a firm royal fan, as demonstrated by the handmade 'Will and Kate' flag she was brandishing.
Liz and Helen Leg are firm royal fans.

The campsite is setting up a big screen for campers to enjoy the festivities. But most people still seemed to be undecided about whether they would brave the throng outside Buckingham Palace or stay and enjoy the atmosphere at Camp Royale.

Whatever the campers decide to do, they are sure to do it armed with a Union Jack flag, and possibly with a journalist lurking in the background looking for an interview and a photo.


Date created : 2011-04-28


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