What time does the Royal Wedding TV coverage start and on what channels?
PUBLISHED: 11:45 18 May 2018 | UPDATED: 11:45 18 May 2018
If you haven’t got an invite, the only way to be at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding is to take up a prime position on the sofa in front of the TV. Here’s the full run-down of coverage for the big day (and where you’ll find the FA Cup Final, too).
Hundreds of millions of people across the world will join together to watch the Royal wedding tomorrow making May 19 the biggest TV day of the year (and if you’re not watching the nuptials, you might well be watching the FA Cup Final).
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will tie the knot at Windsor Castle and for those who haven’t bagged an invite, or who aren’t amongst the 2,460 members of the public who have been invited to stand in the grounds of the castle on the big day, there’s only one place to watch the wedding of the year: in front of the TV.
There will be hours of coverage live-streamed from the lawns of Windsor Castle and the St George’s Chapel nave with footage beginning on the BBC at 9am and on ITV at 9.25am ahead of the hour-long 12 noon ceremony which will be conducted by the Dean of Windsor and officiated by The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby.
The couple have also asked the Most Rev Bishop Michael Curry, the first African-American elected as presiding bishop and primate of the Episcopal Church, to delivering a sermon about love during the ceremony.
One camera will capture the wedding ceremony which will then be broadcast across the world.
The BBC’s coverage will run from 9am until 2pm on Saturday and will be presented by Huw Edwards, Kirsty Young and Dermot O’Leary from the grounds of Windsor Castle.
Young and O’Leary will cover the build-up from the castle’s moat, while newsreader Edwards will present from the roof of the Windsor Guard Room – the trio will be supported by a team of presenters soaking up the atmosphere including The One Show’s Alex Jones and former Strictly Come Dancing champion Ore Oduba.
In a patriotic gesture, the BBC has announced that a television licence will not be needed to watch the wedding, allowing communities to screen the event at street parties and gatherings.
On ITV, Phillip Schofield and Julie Etchingham will begin broadcasting from 9.25am until 3pm, using a purpose-built studio in Windsor and alongside roving reporters Mary Nightingale, Nina Hossain, Charlotte Hawkins and royal editor Chris Ship who will provide updates throughout the day.
Sky’s coverage will be the most extensive of all, starting at 9am until 3pm. Kay Burley, Anna Botting, Jayne Secker, Sarah-Jane Mee, Colin Brazier and Jonathan Samuels will present.
North American viewers face an early start to watch the action live: the first footage begins on CBS This Morning at 4am EST (1am PT), NBC’s coverage starts at 4.30am EST (1.30pm PT) and Good Morning America and ABC News will start streaming live from 5am EST (2am PT).
BBC America will broadcast a live simulcast of the UK’s BBC One from 4.15am EST (1.15am PT), while HBO offers viewers a veritable lie-in by starting live coverage at 7.15am EST (4.30am PT).
The BBC’s coverage of William and Kate’s wedding was watched by 18.7 million viewers on BBC One. More than a million people used BBC iPlayer to watch the coverage.
And for viewers more concerned about a different kind of exciting match, the FA Cup Final between Chelsea and Manchester United will kick off at 5.15pm BST on BBC One – but there will be one notable guest missing from the line-up. Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, usually attends the final and presents the cup to the winning captain in his role as Football Association president – this year, he’ll be fulfilling a different role as Prince Harry’s best man.