Thirty years after the fairy-tale nuptials with the unhappy ending, Britain will finally have another big royal wedding: Its dashing helicopter-pilot prince — second in line to the throne — will marry the lovely commoner who may someday become queen.

Prince William and Kate Middleton bubbled with joy Tuesday evening in their first public appearance since the palace announced their engagement after more than eight years of dating. Their wedding will be next spring or summer.

In a poignant symbol for William, his betrothed wore the sapphire and diamond engagement ring that belonged to his late mother, Diana. “I thought it was quite nice because obviously she’s not going to be around to share any of the fun and excitement of it all. This was my way of keeping her close to it all,” William said.

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