Royal Wedding: Beckham's coming but no Obama

Mon Feb 21, 2011 1:46pm EST
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LONDON (Reuters Life!) - News that Britain's royal wedding invites are in the post has touched off lively press speculation, with former England soccer captain David Beckham and the King of Bahrain tipped to be attending but not Barack Obama or Sarah Ferguson.

Royal watchers say Beckham, who worked with William on England's failed bid to host the World Cup in 2018, and his ex-Spice Girl wife Victoria will be among the 1,900 guests at London's Westminster Abbey on April 29.

Other lucky recipients of invites include William's ex-girlfriends Jecca Craig and Olivia Hunt and Middleton's ex-boyfriend Rupert Finch, newspapers said.

Pop star Elton John, who was close to the prince's late mother Princess Diana and sang at her funeral, is also expected to be going, papers said. He told Reuters last month he did not think he would get an invite.

Among the members of 40 foreign invited royals is the King of Bahrain, a decision criticized by British media as the island kingdom witnesses protests and bloodshed during its worst unrest for years.

However, President Obama and French President Nicolas Sarkozy miss out as the wedding is not classed as a full state occasion.

Ferguson, ex-wife of William's uncle Prince Andrew who was herself married at Westminster Abbey in 1986, has also been left off the guest list, media said.

William's office refused to confirm who had been invited but newspapers reported that Queen Elizabeth and William's father Prince Charles had approved the guest list.

"The couple have made their own decisions about who to invite," an unnamed royal aide told the Sun tabloid.   Continued...

<p>An invitation card for the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton is seen at Buckingham Palace in London, February 16, 2011. REUTERS/John Stillwell/POOL</p>