Michael Middleton received a standing ovation when he delivered his father-of-the-bride speech at daughter Kate's wedding to Prince William in 2011. The businessman is no doubt feeling the pressure as he prepares to walk his younger daughter Pippa up the aisle in just three days' time; she is marrying fiancé James Matthews in St Mark's Church in Englefield, Berkshire on Saturday.
But if Michael's first speech at the royal wedding is anything to go by, the doting father need not worry. He has been heavily involved in Pippa's wedding preparations, and will have spent weeks, if not months, crafting the perfect father-of-the-bride speech. He will focus on the happy couple Pippa and James, and surely talk about his pride for his daughter, sharing anecdotes from Pippa's childhood. We can expect a heartwarming speech, full of emotion that will bring a tear to, at least, the bride's eye.
Michael, 67, may also recall how Pippa and James met and started dating, and how James asked him for his daughter's hand in marriage. He'll no doubt say just how much the couple are suited to each other, and how Pippa will be in safe hands with her new husband. There will be anecdotes and funny stories to share, just as he did at William and Kate's royal wedding. Back then, Michael joked about the Prince landing his helicopter in the grounds of their family home in Berkshire. "He mentioned… how it nearly blew his roof off, and spoke of how brilliantly William fitted into his family," said one guest.
Another guest revealed: "Mike's speech was all about Kate, and he did very, very well – what a difficult speech to do, but it was very well delivered. He talked about her childhood, how the couple met and what a wonderful couple they make."
Michael with daughters Kate and Pippa when they lived in Jordan
Michael will also give a nod to the coming together of the Matthews and Middleton families. He'll want to capture the spirit of the day by welcoming his new son-in-law with open arms. He'll surely thank James' parents David and Jane Matthews for their support. At the royal wedding, Michael told guests: "Today was everything I had hoped for and I'm thrilled that equality ruled the day. Everybody appears as equal and our two families joining together has been an easy process. I thank the royal family for welcoming us as easily as they have."
Michael, 67, will have spent weeks crafting the perfect father-of-the-bride speech
He will also pay tribute to his own wife Carole Middleton and probably end his speech with a few words of parting wisdom. Michael and Carole have been happily married for some 37 years, so the father-of-the-bride will no doubt have a few tips up his sleeve on how to maintain a healthy marriage.