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Monday, June 21, 1999 Published at 16:32 GMT 17:32 UK


Smile! William photo touched up

A wedding group - minus William. The "doctored" photo cannot be published on the Internet.

The photographer who took the official family photo at Prince Edward and Sophie's wedding has said one of the pictures was digitally altered because Prince William did not look happy enough.

Royal Wedding
Sir Geoffrey Shakerley - brother-in-law to Lord Lichfield, the Queen's cousin - took the pictures of the bride and groom, members of their families and foreign Royals.

He said Prince Edward decided his nephew "was not looking his best", so the photo was digitally altered to replace William's face with one from another shot where he is smiling.

[ image: Prince William with his brother Harry at the wedding]
Prince William with his brother Harry at the wedding
Sir Geoffrey told ITN News: "Prince Edward said he didn't think Prince William looked absolutely his best, so digitally we were able to put in another picture of Prince William from one of the other shots where he is smiling and laughing."

Reproduction on the Internet of the official family wedding photos has been banned by Prism Rights Ltd, a subsidiary of the Bagshot Park Charity, a trust named after the Royal couple's home in Surrey. The trust will covenant all funds raised from coverage of the wedding to charity.

"If the photo were to be put out on the Internet it would be a free for all and the charity would not benefit at all," said Henry Boyd-Carpenter, one of the charity's trustees and private solicitor to the Queen and Prince Edward.

Charities likely to benefit are those with which the Royal couple are personally involved.

And some funds may go to the St George's School Appeal, whose choir sang at the wedding.

Royal family 'euphoric'

There was no need to touch up the smiles of other family members, who came in from St George's Chapel to be photographed in the state apartments at Windsor in a flurry of excitment, he said.

"Everybody was very euphoric, very happy and there was a lot of chat and banter going on," he said.

Sophie Rhys-Jones, now the Countess of Wessex, was calm and composed for the photo session, he said.

"She was incredibly relaxed and very natural, very easy, needed very, very little encouragement or direction from me."

Sir Geoffrey also said telephone directories were used to make the more diminutive guests look taller, an idea he said he got from Lord Lichfield, the Queen's cousin.

"He said whatever you do take telephone books. We didn't take enough," said Sir Geoffrey. "We took 10 huge Yellow Pages and that caused a certain amount of merriment - everybody standing on Yellow Pages."

Replica on show

A replica of Sophie's wedding dress was unveiled earlier in the day - less than 48 hours after the royal marriage.

The bridal firm Berkertex Brides had the dress remade in all its beaded glory for the BBC consumer magazine programme Face Value.

A team of designers and dress-makers worked around the clock to complete the gown, which is on display at the Berkertex shop in London's Regent Street, but it is not for sale.

"We did it just to prove that it could be done and how fast it could be done," said Helen Marina, who designed the copy.

You can see how the replica was made on BBC One's Face Value at 7pm on Thursday 24 June.

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