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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle start Scottish visit with Edinburgh walkabout

The Telegraph logo The Telegraph 13/02/2018 By Hannah Furness, Royal Correspondent

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 (Video provided by Press Association)

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have arrived at Edinburgh Castle for a one-day visit to the Scottish capital.

Royal fans braved wet and cold conditions to greet the prince and his bride-to-be at the start of their tour of the city.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle meet Pony Major Mark Wilkinson and regimental mascot Cruachan IV during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle meet Pony Major Mark Wilkinson and regimental mascot Cruachan IV during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. In the shadow of the city's world famous castle, crowds gathered on the esplanade on Tuesday to meet the prince and his fiancee as they greeted well-wishers.

Ms Markle, who is making her fourth joint visit with Prince Harry, wore a  Burberry coat, with trousers by Veronica Beard. 


Later, they will travel to a sandwich shop that supports the homeless and has been visited by number of famous faces including Hollywood star George Clooney.

The trip to Scotland is the fourth public appearance Ms Markle and Harry have made together and follows successful visits to Nottingham, Brixton in south London and Cardiff in the months that followed their engagement announcement in November.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle meet Pony Major Mark Wilkinson and regimental mascot Cruachan IV during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle meet Pony Major Mark Wilkinson and regimental mascot Cruachan IV during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland Also on the esplande was the Royal Marines Band Scotland, which was playing for Ms Markle, the former Suits actress, and the Prince who became Captain General of the Royal Marines in December 2017.

Kensington Palace had said: "Throughout the day Prince Harry and Ms Markle will have the opportunity to meet members of the public, learn more about organisations that work in the local community and nationwide, and celebrate youth in the Scottish Year of Young People 2018."

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland. © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland. Inside the castle at the historic Edinburgh Garrison, which looks out across the city, the couple were due to watch as the One o'clock Gun was fired, a tradition started in 1861 to mark time for ships in the Firth of Forth.

The couple were then set move on to the New Town to visit Social Bite, a social enterprise cafe which distributes 100,000 items of food and hot drinks to homeless people across Scotland each year, as well as employing staff who have experienced homelessness themselves.

In the cafe, Prince Harry and Ms Markle will learn more about the social enterprise, meet staff and tour the kitchen.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. Ashley Torres, 25, a law student at Edinburgh University, had brought a bunch of tulips for the couple. She said: "It's such a cute love story ... being set up by mutual friends. And it will be nice to see an American part of the British monarchy."

Despite cold and wet weather, Royal fans braved the conditions to stake the best place to spot the couple on the castle's esplanade.

Friends Maggie Binnie, 29 and Alice McCourt, 23, both Scottish students, had staked a place on the esplanade against the crash barriers and waved Union flags featuring a picture of the prince and his fiancee.

Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. © Press Association Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. Ms Binnie said: "I really do admire Meghan, she's got a good head on her shoulders and I also admire Harry for the mental health work he does and his work with military veterans."

The Royal couple will be the latest in a string of high-profile visitors to Social Bite premises.

Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio stopped for lunch at Social Bite venture Home in Edinburgh's west end in November 2016, while the Duchess of Cornwall and George Clooney have been to Social Bite's Rose Street branch.

Prince Harry during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland. © Press Association Prince Harry during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland. Prince Harry and Ms Markle will round off their visit by attending a reception at the Palace of Holyroodhouse to celebrate youth achievements marking Scotland's Year of Young People 2018, an initiative that aims to inspire Scotland through its young people.

As they say their vows in front of the watching world, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will have a lifetime of Royal tours ahead of them as a married couple. They will waste no time getting started, it seems.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland. © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland. Kensington Palace announced at the weekend that the newlyweds are to undertake a tour of Windsor as their first trip as a married couple, to greet well-wishers who are expected to turn out from all over the world to see them.

Prince Harry and Ms Markle, who are planning their May 19 wedding themselves, released a series of updates about their day, and how they hope to “share their celebrations with the public”.

Decisions include a carriage ride through Windsor, taking place straight after the St George’s Chapel ceremony and before their reception.

The journey is designed to allow members of the public to see the couple in the flesh, while they are still dressed in their finery, in what is likely to be one of the most photographed occasions of the year.

Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. © Press Association Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. In a series of updates about the wedding, Kensington Palace also announced that the wedding service, at St George's Chapel at midday, will be conducted by The Dean of Windsor, The Rt Revd David Conner.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Revd. and Rt Hon. Justin Welby, will, as expected, officiate as the couple make their marriage vows.

Meghan Markle greets wellwishers while on a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, as she and Prince Harry visited Scotland. © Press Association Meghan Markle greets wellwishers while on a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, as she and Prince Harry visited Scotland. At 1pm, immediately after the service, Prince Harry and Ms Markle, who will receive new titles reflecting their married status on the day, will leave Windsor Castle by carriage, via Castle Hill, along the High Street and through Windsor 

Town before returning along the Long Walk for their reception.

“They hope this short journey will provide an opportunity for more people to come together around Windsor and to enjoy the atmosphere of this special day,” a spokesman said.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. Guests from the congregation will await the happy couple in St George's Hall, to celebrate with the first of two receptions.

The second, for close friends and family, will be thrown in the evening by Prince Harry’s father, the Prince of Wales.

The timings should go some way to allaying the fears of those concerned about a clash with the FA Cup final, with the football match likely to kick off at 5.30pm. 

A spokesman for Kensington Palace said: “Prince Harry and Ms Meghan Markle are hugely grateful for the many good wishes they have received since announcing their engagement.

“They are very much looking forward to the day and to being able to share their celebrations with the public.”

Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. © Press Association Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. Other Royal couples, including the Earl and Countess of Wessex, have also undertaken a carriage procession after their Windsor weddings, with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge enjoying the same two-tier receptions following their 2011 nuptials.

While the final arrangements for the wedding are expected to reflect the personalities of the Prince and Ms Markle with some unique elements, the basic outline of celebrations, as announced by the palace, follows tradition.

While their reception ended with an energetic Prince Harry rounding younger guests onto a minibus to continue the party into the early hours, the calming  influence of Ms Markle may see a more sophisticated conclusion to the Prince’s own day.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle meet Pony Major Mark Wilkinson and regimental mascot Cruachan IV during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle meet Pony Major Mark Wilkinson and regimental mascot Cruachan IV during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle After announcing their engagement, the couple gave an insight into their 16-month romance in a BBC interview - and described how they met on a blind date set up by a mutual friend.

Ms Markle told how she could not wait to say "yes" to the prince when Harry got down on one knee a few weeks ago as they cooked a roast chicken dinner at his home, Nottingham Cottage at Kensington Palace.

Indicating the depths of his feeling for his bride-to-be, Prince Harry said: "The fact that I fell in love with Meghan so incredibly quickly was sort of confirmation to me that everything, all the stars were aligned, everything was just perfect.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. "It was this beautiful woman just sort of literally tripped and fell into my life, I fell into her life." 

A few months into the relationship, Harry said he had to have "some pretty frank conversations" with Meghan about how her life may change when she entered the royal family.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle meet Pony Major Mark Wilkinson and regimental mascot Cruachan IV during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, while on their visit to Scotland. © Press Association Prince Harry and Meghan Markle meet Pony Major Mark Wilkinson and regimental mascot Cruachan IV during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, while on their visit to Scotland.

He added: "But I know that at the end of the day she chooses me, and I choose her, and therefore whatever we have to tackle together or individually we'll always be us together as a team, so I think she's capable... she's capable of anything."

Slideshow: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Get a Warm Scottish Welcome as They Arrive in Edinburgh (Provided by POPSUGAR)

The couple smiled as they greeted the assembled crowds.: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle continued their mini-tour of the UK as they arrived in in Edinburgh on Tuesday. <a href="https://www.popsugar.com/celebrity/Prince-Harry-Meghan-Markle-Cardiff-January-2018-44508506">The couple visited the Welsh capital of Cardiff in January</a>, and now they can add Scotland to their list too. On their first joint official visit to the Scottish capital, Meghan and Harry have a packed schedule that begins with the firing of the One O'clock Gun at Edinburgh castle. Arriving at the historic location, the couple smiled as they greeted the assembled crowds, chatting to excited well-wishers who'd waited all morning for a glimpse of <a href="https://www.popsugar.com/celebrity/Prince-Harry-Meghan-Markle-PDA-Pictures-44342743">the royal lovebirds</a>. Take a look at their arrival now, and stay tuned for more photos from their busy day. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Get a Warm Scottish Welcome as They Arrive in Edinburgh

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