Kate Middleton was caught up in car bomb terror on her wedding day
By MIRROR | 4 weeks ago
Prince William and Kate Middleton's wedding day was an occasion which brought a divided nation back together - but the threat of life-threatening violence was always there.
The police deployed a staggering 5,000 officers at a cost of nearly £6.5million to make sure there were no security threats on the big day in April 2011.
With the nation blighted by recession, unpopular government cuts and riots, London was already on high alert and the royal wedding was considered a prime target.
"My fear is there's some sort of 'Guy Fawkes-ean' plot going on behind close doors to actually potentially put a bomb somewhere," says Bob Broadhurst, The Metropolitan Police Gold Commander on the wedding day.
"The real threat was from the odd individual who gets through. The fixated people who for whatever reason are obsessed with the royal family who might just sneak under your car."
But all the intense measures didn't stop an unidentified vehicle pulling up outside the hotel Kate had been staying at - leading to genuine fears for her safety.
Just 20 minutes before Kate had been due to leave the Goring Hotel in Belgravia, having stayed in a £5,000-a-night Royal Apartment on the top floor along with sister Pippa Middleton and mother Carole, the police were alerted to a concerning development.
There were worries in the Scotland Yard control room just across from Westminster Abbey as the secure zone around the hotel had been breached.
"I don’t know how it happened and I don’t really want to know how it happened to this day," says Broadhurst in tonight's ITV documentary The Day Will and Kate Got Married.
"But someone in a car got through the secure zone, drove up close to The Goring just around the corner, got out the car and legged it and joined the crowd.
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"Now we have a real problem. This is a potential bomb in the car."
Because the car had been parked so close to the entrance of The Goring Hotel, there was concern they would have to alter their best laid plans and Kate wouldn't make it down the aisle on time.
The clock was ticking and to make matters even worse, Broadhurst's boss came in with a party of dignitaries from the International Olympic Committee to show them how The Met works in a crisis.
"You could cut the silence with a knife was we're trying to solve this issue," reveals Broadhurst.
But the ice was broken when a tactical advisor made a joke - claiming bookmakers Paddy Power were offering 10,000/1 odds that Kate wouldn't make the church on time and asking whether he should put money on.
Fortunately, explosive officers turned up at the scene and established there wasn't a bomb inside the car so they were able to downgrade the threat and stick to the original plan.
But not everyone got away so lucky, as the individual who left their car there came back to find it had no doors or windows and found a parking ticket.
Kate was unaware of last minute hitch when she got into the car with her father Michael Middleton to head to Westminster Abbey.
The police had to contend with a million people lining the streets where the procession took place as well as 1,900 guests attending the ceremony.
Foreign VIPs, celebrities and prime ministers stood shoulder to shoulder with people from the village where Kate grew up.
With the London 2012 Olympics just a year away, the pressure could not have been any higher to make sure everything ran smoothly from a policing point of view.
But the winter of 2010 had seen strikes against government cuts and unemployment which brought London to a standstill.
Student protests had been getting increasingly violent and Princes Charles and Camilla's car had been covered in paint just a few months before the wedding.
The Met Police had another headache a month before the big day when violent riots erupted during a TUC march on London and the David Cameron-led government began to panic.
Broadhurst admits there were "huge concerns" and distinctly remembers briefing then Home Secretary Theresa May.
He explains: "Her final comments to me were, 'Now Bob, you will reassure me nothing will go wrong?'
"Its a bit like being a referee. If you have a good game no one notices you, but if you have a stinker you're to blame for everything."
The Met carried out series of raids on known anarchists who were capable of high end violence and arrested 20 people.
They heard rumours and saw rumblings on Twitter that anti-royal protestors would come dressed as zombies throwing maggots and paint instead of confetti.
Fortunately, there were no serious issues on the big day and Kate and William had the happy wedding day everyone had planned.
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