A Right Royal Best Man's Speech

(April 2018)

The following speech - handwritten on Buckingham Palace stationary - was leaked to news sites in February 2018 and its provenance hastily denied by representatives of the Royal Family.

FAKE NEWS. It's obviously not. It's satire. Sorry in advance, your Royal Highnesses, if it ends up going viral as part of a Russian Twitter campaign…

My lords, ladies and gentlemen, when Harry asked me to be his Best Man, I accepted without hesitation. After all we've been through together, it's an honour to represent my younger brother at today's happy proceedings. Besides, I need to get him back for all the gags about my hairline when Kate and I got hitched in 2011… you know… back when I had a hairline.

Speaking of hair, for any of you wondering where Harry got his luscious, ginger locks, I'd just like to remind you that there's a D notice in place that prevents public discussion of that issue. And that it's technically treason.

Now, we're all delighted to welcome Meghan into the fold. She's a breath of fresh air, and a sign of change for our family. After all, as granny said the other day, "The last time there was a blackout in the grounds of Windsor Castle was during the Blitz!"

Meghan, of course, is an American by birth, so I hope she's not too disappointed by President Trump's absence today. Contrary to popular belief, we did invite him, but when he found out there wouldn't be cheeseburgers or fried chicken at the wedding breakfast, he plumped for a golfing weekend at Mar El Largo instead.

In fact, I thought about splashing out on a suite at one of Trump's hotels for the happy couple, as my wedding gift to them. But you never know who's peed on those beds.

Then I thought maybe a city break in Rome or Paris would be nice. But with Brexit plans in full chaos mode, the last person Britain needs representing us on the continent is Harry. There's too much of the squaddie in him. It could all kick off too easily. Especially if he takes fancy dress.

Instead, they'll be heading off to the tropics, for a month of lazing around in unbridled luxury, before heading back to Blighty for… well, more of the same, but with worse weather.

But first, there's a wedding reception to get through. And what a party this is! It seems silly now, but we nearly cancelled the do. Grandpa Phil read a piece in the Daily Mail attacking couples who pay for lavish weddings with welfare handouts from the state, and for one awful moment, we thought they'd finally turned on us!

Fortunately, he'd got the wrong end of the stick. And if the nation's Meghan fever is anything to go by, my glamorous new sister-in-law has helped to cement our popularity for decades to come. Not that Kate isn't glamourous, of course. But if I'd known we were allowed to marry Hollywood stars these days, I might have held out for one of the Kardashians.

Now, finally, as is traditional at these affairs, it would be remiss of me not to acknowledge the generous people who have put their hands in their pockets to pay for today's celebration. The cars, the bubbly, the venue ... As ever, no expense has been spared. So, my lords, ladies and gentlemen, please raise your glasses in a toast … to the British taxpayer!