Chester prepares for 'Britain's poshest wedding' as Duke of Westminster gets married

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-Credit: (Image: Chester Chronicle)

The Duke of Westminster, Hugh Grosvenor, is set to marry his fiancee Olivia Henson tomorrow in what's already being heralded as "the society wedding of the year". The lavish ceremony, attracting attention from numerous well-wishers, will be held at Chester Cathedral.

It is anticipated that a crowd of thousands will throng the streets of Chester for the occasion.

Expected attendees at this grand affair include Royalty and VIPs, and a huge security gig has been set up given the high-profile nature of the event. A series of road closures have been enforced in the city centre ahead of Friday's event, which is scheduled to begin at 12 noon today (June 7).

The young Duke, renowned for his vast estate estimated to weigh in at over £10billion, holds the title of the wealthiest man under 40 in the UK. Grosvenor claims ownership of thousands of acres scattered across Cheshire, Lancashire and reportedly "half of Mayfair" in London, marking him as one of the country's biggest landowners.

On deciding their future abode, the couple plans to establish their new nest in Cheshire upon tying the knot, specifically in the opulent Eaton Hall country estate near Chester - part of the Duke's extensive holdings. This rural hideaway is also set to play host to the wedding party following the formalities at the Cathedral.

Frequently referred to as "Britain's poshest wedding", the event has enthused not just the upper class but local inhabitants as well. As anticipation for the big day mounts, the city's streets are predicted to be lined with thousands of spectators eager to witness the arrival of distinguished guests and the wedding party at the iconic Chester Cathedral.

Speculations around the guest list suggest the presence of Prince William, owing to his close relationship with the Duke. He is expected to serve as an usher at the wedding.

Further augmenting its Royal connection, the Duke is known to be godfather to Princes George and Prince Louis and also Harry's son Archie.

In a gesture of gratitude to their well-wishers, the Duke and Miss Henson have arranged for free ice creams to be available for those who will be in the city centre to watch the arrivals on Friday.

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They have also funded the planting of over 100,000 flowers across the city, adding a splash of colour to the historic Rows.

A spokesperson for The Duke of Westminster and Miss Olivia Henson commented: "The floral displays are a wonderful addition to the vibrancy of the city each summer, making the town centre awash with colour from locally grown flowers.

"While ordinarily the Summer Flowers project is funded by the Chester BID, The Duke of Westminster and Miss Olivia Henson have sponsored this year's displays as part of local celebrations of their marriage at the Cathedral on 7 June."

"They are very grateful for all the support and kind wishes they have received from people and organisations ahead of their wedding."

Hints about the floral display inside the Cathedral suggest a forestry theme, with large displays being moved into the historic building over the past two days.

A leafy arch is also being constructed at one of the main entrances to the Cathedral


The couple also wish to express their thanks to well-wishers planning to line the streets on Friday.

From 10am on Friday, Chester will be buzzing with excitement as three popular ice cream shops offer free treats to celebrate a grand local event. Cheshire Farm Ice Cream at Chester Market, Diddy Donuts beneath the Eastgate Clock, and Krum Gelato on Watergate Street are all participating in the giveaway.

Craig Fermor, the proprietor of Diddy Donuts, expressed his delight: "It's a lovely touch from the couple and will put a lot of smiles on faces. We wish The Duke of Westminster and Miss Olivia Henson all the best for the big day and hope they enjoy many happy years together."

In preparation for the wedding, which is expected to draw a crowd of 400 guests, several roads in Chester city centre will be closed until 5pm on Friday. While motorists are advised to steer clear of the area, pedestrian access will remain open.

The Duke, aged 33, and his fiancee Olivia, 30, shared their engagement news last year. At that time, a statement was released saying: "The Duke of Westminster and Miss Olivia Henson are delighted to announce they are engaged to be married."

The couple, who have been an item for two years, got engaged at Eaton Hall, the Duke's family estate in Cheshire. The announcement was met with joy from both families.

The pair later revealed why they chose Chester Cathedral as their wedding venue.

A spokesperson revealed: "The couple have chosen the cathedral for both its beauty and long association with the Grosvenor family, including to the Duke personally. Cheshire is the Grosvenor family's ancestral home and as Miss Henson's connection to the region continues to grow, they are keen to plan their wedding there.

"The Duke and Miss Henson became engaged at Eaton Hall in April and have been incredibly grateful for the warm messages of congratulations they have received since then."

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