'She's beautiful... Only a prince can have a lady like that!' Radiant Meghan wins an army of starstruck new young British fans as she joins fiancé Harry for their first royal charity engagement

  • Harry and Meghan pulled in massive crowds as they visit World Aids Day fair and youth project in Nottingham
  • Well-wishers praise 'down to earth' couple who shook hands and even hugged people in 30 minute walkabout?
  • They were greeted by more than a thousand cheering people outside the city's Contemporary Arts Centre
  • Shell-shocked Meghan said:?'It's just such a thrill to be here. I can't believe it, I've been made so welcome'
  • Future duchess chatted about her role in Suits, the engagement and took gifts including Haribo for Harry
  • A young woman dropped a glove and Meghan picked it up and handed it back to her in an act of kindness?
  • Red-headed young man asked Harry how it felt to be marrying Meghan 'as a ginger' - He replied: 'It's great!'?
  • Royal couple are set to go on a world tour after they marry at St George's Chapel in Windsor in May 2018??

Meghan Markle made her first official engagement with?Prince Harry?look easy today as she won an army of new fans, including one who said within earshot:?'She's beautiful. Only a prince can have a lady like that!'

The royal couple shared countless handshakes, high-fives, hugs and took presents including bags of Haribo sweets - Harry's favourites - from crowds five-deep chanting their names in Nottingham today.?

Meghan, 36, looked happy and relaxed throughout, chatting about their wedding at Windsor Castle next year and quitting the hit show Suits while thanking people for 'braving the cold to see us' and 'making us feel so welcome'.

'I'm so happy,' she said at one point, adding: 'It's just such a thrill to be here. I can't believe it'. During the walkabout this morning she introduced herself to people with a cheery: 'Hi, I'm Meghan'.?

Star-struck young footballer Ale Araphate, 21, asked loudly: 'Is that Prince Harry's wife?' as the couple approached at Nottingham arts centre and said: 'She is beautiful. Only a prince can have a lady like that!'

The star, wearing a £585 coat and carrying a £455 handbag, kept resting her hand on Harry's back in a repeated loving and reassuring gesture and for long periods clutched his arm and held his hand.

Prince Harry looked fit to burst with pride as he watched as his new fiancée worked the crowds.

She spent around 25 minutes meeting the crowds with Harry, charming members of the public as she introduced herself with a cheery 'Hi, I'm Meghan.' 'I'm so happy,' she said at one point. 'It's just such a thrill to be here.'

The newly-engaged couple received a rapturous welcome in Nottingham as they began their public life together

The newly-engaged couple received a rapturous welcome in Nottingham as they began their public life together

Meghan clutches one of the many bunches of flowers handed to her by crowds in the East Midlands today

Meghan clutches one of the many bunches of flowers handed to her by crowds in the East Midlands today

Miss Markle looks adoringly into Harry's eyes as they speak with teachers at the Nottingham Academy today

Miss Markle looks adoringly into Harry's eyes as they speak with teachers at the Nottingham Academy today

US actress Meghan Markle speaks to a little boy as they tour the Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair

US actress Meghan Markle speaks to a little boy as they tour the Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair

Meghan looked stunning ?as she carried out her first engagement as part of the royal family

Meghan looked stunning ?as she carried out her first engagement as part of the royal family

The future duchess repeatedly  introduced herself with a cheery 'Hi, I'm Meghan' to people she met

The future duchess repeatedly introduced herself with a cheery 'Hi, I'm Meghan' to people she met

Harry and Meghan laugh as they are handed a T-shirt by a charity close to the prince's heart

Harry and Meghan laugh as they are handed a T-shirt by a charity close to the prince's heart

Harry was evidently having a fantastic time able to share his royal duties with a partner for the first time in his life

Harry was evidently having a fantastic time able to share his royal duties with a partner for the first time in his life

Meghan Markle clutches a bag of Haribo sweets - Harry's favourites - as she wowed crowds in Nottingham today?

Meghan Markle clutches a bag of Haribo sweets - Harry's favourites - as she wowed crowds in Nottingham today?

Meghan crouches down to speak to a young fan as people praised her 'down to earth attitude' on her first royal outing

Meghan crouches down to speak to a young fan as people praised her 'down to earth attitude' on her first royal outing

After three hours in Nottingham and meeting hundreds of people Meghan's first day of royal duties was over

After three hours in Nottingham and meeting hundreds of people Meghan's first day of royal duties was over

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Mr Araphate, 21, the captain of a football team for Champions For Change, a project which uses football to reach African communities in the Midlands to talk about HIV/Aids, said the 36-year-old American actress was 'beautiful'.

If Mr Araphate was more outspoken than most of the guests at the charity event, he did no more than reflect the mood at the Nottingham arts centre where the couple met a group of charities involved in HIV/Aids - that Ms Markle passed her royal initiation test with flying colours.

Sandra Spence, centre manager for the Terrence Higgins Trust, said: 'They were very relaxed. They fed off each other, which is unusual in a couple but nice to see. It was refreshing to see two people who actually gelled, as opposed to two people who needed to be together.'

Her colleague Liz Waters, a health promotion specialist for MSM (Men who have sex with men), said: 'They have a lovely glow about them.'

Chris O'Hanlon, who is a peer mentor for Positively UK, a charity which helps people newly diagnosed with HIV, talked to them about his own diagnosis and the importance of fitness in dealing with HIV.

'I spoke to Meghan about my passion for yoga,' said Mr O'Hanlon, 40, a clinical hypnotherapist from Luton. 'I said, 'You are a big yogi and love your yoga.' She said, 'Absolutely, I love incorporating it into my life, it is something I have always done.'

He said the couple were 'so natural' together. 'They are very personable. It is very easy to talk to them because they are so open. They have a very jokey attitude. You worry that you have to be 'They seem amazingly comfortable together. You can see that it's a perfect match.

'This may have been her first official engagement, but she was a complete natural at it. She was incredibly observant about what we were talking about, and very interested. She picked up on quite a few things that I was saying, particularly in terms of my own diagnosis. She was very empathetic.?

Harry and Miss Markle engaged in conversation with the woman as they carried out their visit

Harry and Miss Markle engaged in conversation with the woman as they carried out their visit

Miss Markle looked delighted to receive the flowers and words from the well-wisher at the event this morning

Miss Markle looked delighted to receive the flowers and words from the well-wisher at the event this morning

The newly-engaged couple make a public appearance during their visit to Nottingham this morning

The newly-engaged couple make a public appearance during their visit to Nottingham this morning

At points during the walkabout, Miss Markle put a reassuring hand on her the back of her 33-year-old husband-to-be

At points during the walkabout, Miss Markle put a reassuring hand on her the back of her 33-year-old husband-to-be

The couple were all smiles as they took applause from well-wishers who chanted their name in Nottingham today

The couple were all smiles as they took applause from well-wishers who chanted their name in Nottingham today

Meghan repeatedly told people how happy she was was to see so many people and thanked them for coming

Meghan repeatedly told people how happy she was was to see so many people and thanked them for coming

Meghan says goodbye to well-wishers as her first day of royal engagements came to an end this afternoon

Meghan says goodbye to well-wishers as her first day of royal engagements came to an end this afternoon

Meghan was described as 'absolutely lovely' by several people who met her and she was equally grateful to meet ?them
Meghan was described as 'absolutely lovely' by several people who met her and she was equally grateful to meet ?them

Meghan was described as 'absolutely lovely' by several people who met her and she was equally grateful to meet ?them

Meghan waves to a shy fan in the huge crowds out to see her and Harry today

Meghan waves to a shy fan in the huge crowds out to see her and Harry today

'Not only will she make a good addition to the royal family, she will make an excellent ambassador to any of the causes she puts her heart and her mind to.'

Ms Markle also exhibited a key trait that will stand her in good stead as a member of the royal family: she clearly loves children.

As she met Lorraine Dube, 29, a volunteer with the African Institute for Social Development, and her son Ezekiel Wong, two, Ms Markle tried valiantly to coax him out of his shyness, stroking his arm and chatting to him.

'She is absolutely lovely,' said Ms Dube. 'You can tell that she loves kids. Ezekiel was very shy. She was trying to get him to say something. In the end he said thank you as she walked off, which I thought was really cute. She said he was a cute little boy.'

As she left, she passed another small child in their mother's arms, reached out and said: 'So sweet!'

As they walked round the room in Nottingham Contemporary, Ms Markle stuck closely to Harry's side, but never appeared nervous or shy.

While she regularly looked up at him, she was also not backward in coming forward with questions of her own, picking up on what people said to her.

One of the people they met was Siobhan Lanigan, the chief executive of The Food Chain, a charity which gives nutritional advice to people with HIV.?

People presented flowers to Miss Markle while others waved flags to welcome her to Nottingham today

People presented flowers to Miss Markle while others waved flags to welcome her to Nottingham today

People scramble to take a picture of Miss Markle on their smartphones as she meets the public in Nottingham today

People scramble to take a picture of Miss Markle on their smartphones as she meets the public in Nottingham today

Harry looked happy and proud of his fiancee as she coped so well with the limelight in the East Midlands today?

Harry looked happy and proud of his fiancee as she coped so well with the limelight in the East Midlands today?

The love they have for each other was clear to see in the way they continually touched each other, held hands and glanced into each other's eyes

The love they have for each other was clear to see in the way they continually touched each other, held hands and glanced into each other's eyes

Harry and his fiancee Meghan pose for a photograph with the cast of a hip hop opera at Full Effect

Harry and his fiancee Meghan pose for a photograph with the cast of a hip hop opera at Full Effect

Harry opens the door for Meghan on their visit to the Nottingham Academy as his fiancee speaks to a member of staff

Harry opens the door for Meghan on their visit to the Nottingham Academy as his fiancee speaks to a member of staff

The couple spent around 30 minutes speaking to crowds and a little longer inside the?World AIDS Day charity fair before heading off to a school

The couple spent around 30 minutes speaking to crowds and a little longer inside the?World AIDS Day charity fair before heading off to a school

Ms Lanigan twice met Diana, Princess of Wales, when she was chief fundraiser for London Lighthouse, an Aids hospice.

Inspired by the fact that the couple revealed this week how Harry proposed to Ms Markle as they prepared roast chicken at home at Kensington Palace, Ms Lanigan showed them a recipe for Ethiopian chicken tagine from her charity's cookbook, Nourish.

It was a point that did not escape Harry's fiancée. 'She said, 'Oh yes, we mentioned the chicken,' said Ms Lanigan.

'She said, 'We might try that.' They took a copy of the book with them. She said she enjoyed spices in her food.'

As an American about to join the British royal family, Ms Markle also passed another test for anyone marking their mark in public life this side of the Atlantic: she recognised the importance of football in our national life.

Amdani Juma, the project coordinator for Champions for Change, said: 'She said football is the number one sport for bringing the human race together.'

He added: 'She was very natural. They looked absolutely ecstatic.'

And, more importantly, she made a big impression on his colleague Mr Araphate, a tourism student as well as the team captain and goalkeeper. 'He said, 'Is that Prince Harry's wife?' I said, 'Yes, his wife-to-be.' He said, 'They are amazing. She is very beautiful. Only the prince can have a lady like that.'??

Harry and Miss Markle began their tour at the National Justice Museum in Nottingham Lace Market today

Harry and Miss Markle began their tour at the National Justice Museum in Nottingham Lace Market today

Prince Harry and bride-to-be Meghan Markle began their public life together with a whirlwind of handshakes and smiles
Harry and Miss Markle pictured today

Prince Harry and bride-to-be Meghan Markle began their public life together with a whirlwind of handshakes and smiles

Miss Markle joined Prince Harry in Nottingham city centre during their first official royal outing together today

Miss Markle joined Prince Harry in Nottingham city centre during their first official royal outing together today

Down to earth Meghan is relying on Harry's staff... for now

Meghan Markle with Harry's aide Heather Wong

Meghan Markle with Harry's aide Heather Wong

With no private secretary yet, Meghan had to hold the flowers and her handbag in the same hand but carried on greeting well-wishers.?

A little while later one of Harry's aides, believed to be Heather Wong, took the blooms from her.

The model and actress, 36, also showed that she is already learning the royal rules when it comes to official visits, politely declining to pose for a selfie, telling one couple: 'We're not allowed.'

Harry recently appointed her as his new assistant private secretary, Heather Wong, who worked with Prince Charles's former spin doctor, Paddy Harverson, at his PR venture, Milltown Partners.?

Red carpet veteran Ms Markle also went it alone to chat with people lining both sides of the route, accepting everything from bars of chocolate to cards and bunches of flowers.

At one point a young woman dropped a glove and Meghan noticed in the corner of her eye, picked it up and handed it back to her.?

Ann McGuire, who brought her nearly-three-year-old son Leo with her, said: ?'She grabbed my hand and said I'm so glad you braved it to stand in the cold', and said of Meghan: 'She's such a natural.'

Katie Shaw, 22, said the couple were 'very down to earth even though they're royal' and said: 'It's all about Suits. We really like Suits and she told us there are going to be two more series'.

Harry also saw the funny side today when he was asked what it was like to be ginger and engaged to a Hollywood star like Meghan Markle and admitted himself their romance was 'unbelievable' and said:?'It's great, isn't it!'.

With no private secretary yet, she had to hold the flowers and her handbag in the same hand but carried on greeting well-wishers. A little while later one of Harry's aide took the blooms from her.

The model and actress, 36, also showed that she is already learning the royal rules when it comes to official visits, politely declining to pose for a selfie, telling one couple: 'We're not allowed.'???

Harry and Meghan arrived a few minutes ahead of schedule and, after greeting dignitaries, immediately ploughed off to speak to the waiting crowds.

Although they stood for a second, wrapped around each other. Meghan showed no hint of nerves and after joining Harry for a while on one side of the street, confidently peeled off on her own.?

The prince and the actress immediately undertook a traditional royal walkabout, plunging into the crowds to shake hands.??

One woman is delighted to take a picture of Miss Markle during the royal couple's meet-and-greet in Nottingham today

One woman is delighted to take a picture of Miss Markle during the royal couple's meet-and-greet in Nottingham today

Miss Markle smiles to well-wishers

The prince and his fiancee appeared eager to meet the public with Harry at one point asking someone 'can I shake your hand?'

Harry and Miss Markle, received a rapturous welcome from the people of Nottingham as they began their public life together
The couple walk through the streets of Nottingham

Harry and Miss Markle, received a rapturous welcome from the people of Nottingham as they began their public life together

With no private secretary yet, she held the flowers and her handbag in the same hand and carried on greeting well-wishers

With no private secretary yet, she held the flowers and her handbag in the same hand and carried on greeting well-wishers

Harry and Miss Markle spoke privately as well as with members of the public during the walkabout today
Harry waves to a member of the public

Harry and Miss Markle spoke privately as well as with members of the public during the walkabout today

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive in Nottingham today on their first royal visit after announcing their engagement

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle enjoyed the warmest of welcomes on their first royal engagement together as a couple today with well-wishers declaring: 'We love him - she's beautiful'.

Harry and his fiancée Miss Markle greet well wishers as they arrive at the event in Nottingham this morning

Harry and his fiancée Miss Markle greet well wishers as they arrive at the event in Nottingham this morning

The prince and his fiancee appeared eager to meet the public with Harry at one point asking someone 'can I shake your hand?'.

He then smiled when a well-wisher shouted, from three or four rows back behind a crash barrier: 'How does it feel being a ginger with Meghan?'

The former Army officer replied with a grin 'It's great, isn't it?', when the man said the word 'unbelievable?', Harry responded 'unbelievable'.?

The love they have for each other was clear to see in the way they continually touched each other, held hands and glanced into each other's eyes.

They also were tactile with the crowds stopping to touch people on the arm and Ms Markle even rubbed someone's wrist - as if to warm them up on the cold day - as she shook their hand.?

The couple spent long periods speaking to people who congratulated them on their engagement with the prince handing out high fives to youngsters who came to see them.?

Ms Markle was wrapped up against the cold in a long dark blue coat by Mackage, and boots. She was also without gloves, so her engagement ring was on display, and carried a handbag - something the Duchess of Cambridge rarely does.??

The visit to Nottingham today aims to raise awareness of HIV/Aids and efforts to tackle youth crime

The visit to Nottingham today aims to raise awareness of HIV/Aids and efforts to tackle youth crime

The prince and the actress immediately undertook a traditional royal walkabout, plunging into the crowds to shake hands and collect bouquets and cards of congratulation

The prince and the actress immediately undertook a traditional royal walkabout, plunging into the crowds to shake hands and collect bouquets and cards of congratulation

Just a few days after announcing their engagement, the couple were carrying out their first joint royal engagement today
Miss Markle arrives in Nottingham today

Just a few days after announcing their engagement, the couple were carrying out their first joint royal engagement today

The tour around Britain over the next six months will allow the American former actress to get to know her new home

The tour around Britain over the next six months will allow the American former actress to get to know her new home

Harry shakes the hand of a well-wisher during the walkabout in Nottingham as they carry out a royal engagement

Harry shakes the hand of a well-wisher during the walkabout in Nottingham as they carry out a royal engagement

The former actress soon left her fiancee's side and walked to the other side of the road to greet hundreds of fans

The former actress soon left her fiancee's side and walked to the other side of the road to greet hundreds of fans

Onlookers were desperate to grab a photo of the royal couple as they made their way through Nottingham today

Onlookers were desperate to grab a photo of the royal couple as they made their way through Nottingham today

Miss Markle was handed a bunch of flowers by a member of the crowd in Nottingham this morning

Miss Markle was handed a bunch of flowers by a member of the crowd in Nottingham this morning

The couple smiled as they spoke to a woman who handed the bunch of flowers to Miss Markle this morning

The couple smiled as they spoke to a woman who handed the bunch of flowers to Miss Markle this morning

Harry was animated as the couple spoke to the woman during their walkabout in Nottingham this morning

Harry was animated as the couple spoke to the woman during their walkabout in Nottingham this morning

Isn't she GLOVELY! Meghan delights one lucky wellwisher by picking up her MITTEN when it falls to the floor?

Meghan Markle is seen handing back the glove to a well-wisher after she dropped it today

Meghan Markle is seen handing back the glove to a well-wisher after she dropped it today

The woman was clearly delighted to have been handed the glove back by Miss Markle

The woman was clearly delighted to have been handed the glove back by Miss Markle

Miss Markle puts her hand on the back of Harry during their walkabout in Nottingham today

Miss Markle puts her hand on the back of Harry during their walkabout in Nottingham today

She might be six months away from marrying one of the world's most eligible bachelors, but Meghan Markle still clearly has a down-to-earth side.

For the 36-year-old American actress happily picked up a glove from the ground after it was dropped by a well-wisher greeting her in Nottingham this morning.

Miss Markle, who will marry Prince Harry in May, bent down to pick up the glove and handed it back to its surprised owner, who thanked her.

The touching moment came as Harry and Miss Markle received a rapturous welcome from the people of Nottingham as they began their public life together.

Just a few days after announcing their engagement, the couple were carrying out their first joint royal engagement.

The visit aims to raise awareness of HIV/Aids and efforts to tackle youth crime but it also gave the prince the opportunity to showcase his partner to the nation.

Harry chose Nottingham, a city he knows well, for their first walkabout, a mainstay of royal engagements.

The couple, who arrived by train, began their tour with a civic welcome at the National Justice Museum in Nottingham's historic Lace Market district.

Ahead of their arrival, hundreds of curious and excited onlookers had packed the streets.

The city and its people are close to Harry's heart, with the visit his third public trip there since October last year.

It is the first official engagement by the couple in what will be a six-month tour of the UK, allowing the American former actress to get to know her new home.

Prince Harry's financee mingled with the crowds in Nottingham city centre, telling people how she hoped they weren't too cold in the chilly December weather.

Meghan, 36, showed that she is already learning the royal rules when it comes to official visits, politely declining to pose for a selfie, telling one couple: 'We're not allowed.'

Barbara Miller, 63, from Nottingham, said: 'She said thank you very much for braving the cold.

'I said 'can we have a selfie?'. She said 'we're not allowed to do selfies'.

'I said congratulations. She was so pleasant, she was lovely.

Prince Harry and Meghan 'have NOT set a date for the royal wedding' despite reports saying it's on for May 26

Reports that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding will take place on May 26 have been rubbished - with the happy couple yet to set a date themselves.

It was suggested tonight that the pair will marry on the Saturday of the spring bank holiday weekend, meaning Brits would have three days off to celebrate.

However The Sun's was quickly scotched by royal commentators, who told MailOnline that no date has been set in stone since Monday's announcement.

Earlier this week, Kensington Palace said the wedding will take place at St George's Chapel in the grounds of Windsor Castle sometime in May.

Last night it refused to comment on the proposed date of May 26.?

'She said to my husband 'your hands are really cold'.

Husband David Miller, 74, added: 'I shook her hand. She said it was really cold.'

Cori Burns, 80 from Clifton, said Meghan pointed out her home state of California is warmer than the UK.

Cori said: 'I used to live in California so I asked her where she was from and she said it's warmer over there than here.'

Irene Hardman, 81, from Ruddington said: 'I just said she's wonderful and beautiful and they'll be absolutely wonderful together.

'She kept saying 'thank you so much'. They were just wonderful. She kept saying 'I can't believe it, I've been made so welcome and I can't believe it'.'?

Micaela Lueders, 20, who is from California, said the former actress had recognised her accent and told her: 'Its so lovely to meet a fellow Californian, I'm so excited to be here.

'She was wondering if I was staying here and whether I'm enjoying it. It was really great. She seemed very natural.

'She's very warm. I bet she was terribly nervous but she didn't show it.'

Waving to people in the windows above the narrow street, Ms Markle walked down a line asking people their names, where they are from and endearingly introducing herself by name in case they were not sure who she was.

Claire Kensall brought a card made by her daughter Ruby, seven, congratulating them on their engagement and saying: 'I can't wait to see your wedding.'

'Harry said he was really pleased, and thanked her,' she added.?

Frieda, 87 from Nottingham, recalled seeing the Queen in the city when she was Princess Elizabeth around 1950, wanting to pass her best wishes to Prince Harry.

'She was lovely,' she said of Meghan. 'She said she was so pleased to be here. I told her you're lovely - she's very beautiful.

'Harry said he loved my plaits.'

One group of mothers had brought five small children for their first encounter with royalty, with Claire Saribi saying they could not pass up the opportunity to show them history in action.

Her son Idris, one, had been practising saying 'congratulations' ahead of the walkabout, while Zo? and Emilia, who are three and friends from ballet class, made a card covered in star-shaped stickers.

Ms Markle crouched down to meet them and ask how old they were, and thank them for the card.

Helena Bottomly, who gave a bag of Haribo to Meghan to pass to her fiance, stood with three friends who had brought red and white roses, said: 'She was really pleased with the presents. We congratulated her.'

Asked for their assessment of Ms Markle, the friends said: 'She's a little gem.'

The walkabout also gave Ms Markle and Prince Harry to indulge their love of dogs, with the Prince asking one named Gertie whether he was getting a Christmas stocking.

While most people spent time speaking about the Royal family, others had more important concerns.

Mandy Koehler, 19 from Nebraska, who is studying in Nottingham, said: 'I wanted to ask Prince Harry his favourite colour. He said it was blue, but then changed his mind to purple.'

She brushed her hair from her face and smiled broadly as she shook hand after hand before rejoining the prince a little later

She brushed her hair from her face and smiled broadly as she shook hand after hand before rejoining the prince a little later

The couple are on their first official visit together, choosing to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS with a visit to a youth project

The couple are on their first official visit together, choosing to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS with a visit to a youth project

Harry and Miss Markle smile during a visit to the Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair today
Miss Markle is greeted in Nottingham

Harry and Miss Markle smile during a visit to the Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair today

Miss Markle talks to members of the public in Nottingham city centre during the couple's first official royal outing

Miss Markle talks to members of the public in Nottingham city centre during the couple's first official royal outing

Harry chose Nottingham, a city he knows well, for their first walkabout, a mainstay of royal engagements

Harry chose Nottingham, a city he knows well, for their first walkabout, a mainstay of royal engagements

Miss Markle was wearing a dark blue coat as the newly-engaged couple spoke and posed for photos with the onlookers

Miss Markle was wearing a dark blue coat as the newly-engaged couple spoke and posed for photos with the onlookers

Harry talks to members of the public in Nottingham city centre during their first official royal outing this morning

Harry talks to members of the public in Nottingham city centre during their first official royal outing this morning

Harry shakes the hand of a at the Nottingham Contemporary in Nottingham

Harry shakes the hand of a at the Nottingham Contemporary in Nottingham

Members of the crowd chanted 'Harry, Harry' and 'Meghan, Meghan ' as they waved to the well-wishers today

Members of the crowd chanted 'Harry, Harry' and 'Meghan, Meghan ' as they waved to the well-wishers today

The crowd cheered and some waved Union Jack flags as the pair walked down to the Nottingham Contemporary gallery

The crowd cheered and some waved Union Jack flags as the pair walked down to the Nottingham Contemporary gallery

Ms Markle was wrapped up against the cold in a long dark blue coat by Mackage, and boots

Ms Markle was wrapped up against the cold in a long dark blue coat by Mackage, and boots

Miss Markle brushed her long hair from her face and smiled broadly as she shook hand after hand

Miss Markle brushed her long hair from her face and smiled broadly as she shook hand after hand

The Nottingham trip is the first official engagement by the couple in what will be a six-month tour of the UK

The Nottingham trip is the first official engagement by the couple in what will be a six-month tour of the UK

Miss Markle was wearing a dark blue coat as the newly-engaged couple spoke and posed for photos with the onlookers
Miss Markle in Nottingham today

Miss Markle was carried a handbag - something the Duchess of Cambridge rarely does

The couple began their tour with a civic welcome at the National Justice Museum in Nottingham's historic Lace Market district

The couple began their tour with a civic welcome at the National Justice Museum in Nottingham's historic Lace Market district

Harry (centre) greets wellwishers on a walkabout as he arrives with Miss Markle for the engagement at Nottingham

Harry (centre) greets wellwishers on a walkabout as he arrives with Miss Markle for the engagement at Nottingham

The city and its people are close to Harry's heart, with the visit his third public trip there since October last year

The city and its people are close to Harry's heart, with the visit his third public trip there since October last year

Crowds tried their best to get a photo or video of Harry this morning, while others tried simply to shake his hand

Crowds tried their best to get a photo or video of Harry this morning, while others tried simply to shake his hand

Harry and Miss Markle visited Nottingham on their first visit together since announcing their engagement

Harry and Miss Markle visited Nottingham on their first visit together since announcing their engagement

Royal superfan keeps Meghan sweet by handing her two bags of Haribos - just like she did with Harry's father 20 years ago?

She's become known for handing bags of Haribo sweets to Prince Harry and first presented his father with two bags 20 years ago.

So avid royal fan Irene Hardman was delighted to hand Meghan Markle a goody bag containing fridge magnets and other gifts in Nottingham today.

She said that the meeting was 'very emotional' – and, through tears of joy, added: 'I cried - she's wonderful, and it's fantastic. They're so genuine.'

Irene Hardman was delighted to hand Meghan Markle a goody bag containing fridge magnets and other gifts, along with Haribo (circled)

Irene Hardman was delighted to hand Meghan Markle a goody bag containing fridge magnets and other gifts, along with Haribo (circled)

Mrs Hardman handed over the Haribo (pictured) as well as a card with 'congratulations' on and information leaflets on local attractions

Mrs Hardman handed over the Haribo (pictured) as well as a card with 'congratulations' on and information leaflets on local attractions

The 81-year-old royalist said she also bought some Haribo for Harry, Nottingham fudge and a Christmas card with 'Nottingham' on it.

In addition, Mrs Hardman handed over a card with 'congratulations' on and information leaflets on Newstead Abbey and Nottingham Castle.

The royal fan, from Ruddington, Nottingham, first presented the Prince of Wales, with two bags of sweets - the other for brother William – some 20 years ago.

The royal fan first presented the Prince of Wales, with two bags of sweets - the other for brother William – some 20 years ago

The royal fan first presented the Prince of Wales, with two bags of sweets - the other for brother William – some 20 years ago

She said of the gifts today: 'I've got him a little goody bag. I've bought two fridge magnets with Nottingham on, I bought lots of information leaflets on surrounding places such as Newstead Abbey and the Castle.

'I've bought him Haribo and some Nottingham fudge, and a Christmas card with Nottingham on and also a card with 'congratulations' on.'

Mrs Hardman, who had previously met Harry twice, added: 'It is absolutely wonderful and fantastic, and we're privileged they've chosen Nottingham to be their first official engagement.'

On arrival at 11.05am they were greeted by a line-up including Sir John Peace, Lord Lieutenant of Nottinghamshire And his wife Lady Christine Peace, Councillor Michael Edwards, Lord Mayor of Nottingham and his wife Mrs Edwards, Councillor John Handley

When Meghan met Elizabeth: Apprentice's most outspoken wannabe battles through the crowds for her royal moment?

Apprentice candidate Elizabeth McKenna was keen to battle through the crowds for her royal moment in front of the cameras today too

Apprentice candidate Elizabeth McKenna was keen to battle through the crowds for her royal moment in front of the cameras today too

She's been a regular fixture on our TV screens over the past few months, but Elizabeth McKenna was keen to battle through the crowds for her royal moment in front of the cameras today too.

The outspoken contestant in this year's The Apprentice, who is also a Nottingham-based florist, said: 'I'm out here today to see if I can catch a glimpse of Meghan and Harry.

'But what I've been allowed to do today is the honour of producing a bouquet which will be presented to Ms Markle this afternoon up at the Nottingham Academy. It's a great, great honour for me as a florist.

Nottingham-based Ms McKenna (left), with fellow contestants Sarah Lynn and Bushra Shaikh on BBC programme The Apprentice

Nottingham-based Ms McKenna (left), with fellow contestants Sarah Lynn and Bushra Shaikh on BBC programme The Apprentice

'I'm just here as a fan and as a royal subject and I just want to see Meghan and Harry like everybody else. For any florist to produce a posy for a royal visit is a massive thing.

'I've done it once or twice in the past but to produce a posy for today, which is the first engagement for Meghan Markle, is just my honour. It's a huge honour and I'm thrilled.'

Ms McKenna, 39, has become one of the most talked about characters in this series of the long-running BBC programme, and is known for her outspoken and abrupt manner - and regularly falling out with other contestants.

and his wife Mrs Margaret Handley and Mr Ian Curryer, chief executive of Nottingham city council.

Mr Curryer said afterwards: 'We were talking about how it's great to have them here.

'Prince Harry comes a lot because of his private charity work.

'We were saying how brilliant it is that their first engagement as a couple is here.

'Particularly as they've come from Nottingham Cottage to here, I said that and they laughed.

'They said it's been great to come.

'Prince Harry said we're delighted to be here and look at the number of people who've turned out.'

Crowds lined the street leading up to the city's Justice Museum and by the time the couple arrived there were several thousand people in the city centre.

Many were waving Union flags and some had also brought US flags.

Dorothy Mee, 66, from Nottingham, said: 'I'm a royalist and love what William and Harry have done bringing the monarchy into the younger people's realm.

'Especially Harry and the Invictus Games.

'I'm here to show some support and welcome her to her first official visit

'It's wonderful they've come to Nottingham, I would love to know why.

'This day is the start of a long journey together.'

Margo Heyhurst, from Cambridge, said: 'I have two sisters who married American GIs and live in America, one in San Francisco and one in Maine.

'I'm a great fan of Suits, right from series one.

'Her clothes, her demeanour, everything about her.

'They're so in love, I loved all the things they said in their interview.

'We need magic at the moment.

'There should be a public holiday for the wedding.'?

At points during the walkabout, Ms Markle put a reassuring hand on Harry's back and she was given a bunch of cream coloured flowers.

The former actress soon left her fiancee's side and walked to the other side of the road to greet hundreds of fans who were crowded behind crash barriers.

She brushed her long hair from her face and smiled broadly as she shook hand after hand.?

Ian Curryer, chief executive of Nottingham City Council, gave the couple a Robin Hood badge each, to commemorate the visit.

Just before heading into the Nottingham Contemporary gallery for a World Aids Day fair hosted by the Terrence Higgins Trust, Harry spotted a familiar face in the crowd - Ms Hardman.

She laughed and chatted with the couple and handed a goody bag to Ms Markle, containing fridge magnets and other gifts.

She said afterwards that the meeting was 'very emotional'.

Through tears of joy, she said: 'I cried - she's wonderful, and it's fantastic. They're so genuine.'

'It's great isn't it!' What beaming Harry told red-headed wellwisher who asked him on royal couple's first walkabout: 'How does it feel to be with Meghan as a ginger?'?

Prince Harry saw the funny side today when he was asked what it was like to be ginger and engaged to a Hollywood star like Meghan Markle.

The humorous moment came as he and Meghan enjoyed the warmest of welcomes on their first royal engagement together as a couple today with well-wishers declaring: 'We love him - she's beautiful'.

At one point in the 30-minute walkabout a red-headed member of the crowd asked Harry how it felt to be getting married to a star like Meghan 'as a ginger'.

Harry laughed uproariously and replied: 'It's great, isn't it!' and agreeing it was 'unbelievable'.

Prince Harry saw the funny side today when he was asked what it was like to be ginger and engaged to a Hollywood star like Meghan Markle

Prince Harry saw the funny side today when he was asked what it was like to be ginger and engaged to a Hollywood star like Meghan Markle

A red-headed member of the crowd asked Harry how it felt to be getting married to a star like Meghan 'as a ginger'

A red-headed member of the crowd asked Harry how it felt to be getting married to a star like Meghan 'as a ginger'

Harry laughed uproariously and replied: 'It's great, isn't it!'

Harry laughed uproariously and replied: 'It's great, isn't it!'

Prince Harry and bride-to-be Meghan Markle began their public life together with a whirlwind of handshakes and smiles as the crowd chanted their names during their first walkabout.

Hundreds of well-wishers had gathered in Nottingham to greet the couple and were not disappointed as the prince and his fiancee appeared determined to meet almost everyone on their first joint engagement.

Harry during a royal visit to Nottingham
Just days after announcing their engagement, Harry and Miss Markle are having their first royal engagement in Nottingham

Just days after announcing their engagement, Harry and Miss Markle are having their first royal engagement in Nottingham

Harry and Miss Markle split up to chat with people lining both sides of the route during their walkabout today

Harry and Miss Markle split up to chat with people lining both sides of the route during their walkabout today

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit a Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair in Nottingham this morning
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive at Nottingham station

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive at Nottingham train station this morning ahead of their first official royal visit

Harry and Miss Markle arrive at Nottingham train station  this morning?ahead of their first official engagement together

Harry and Miss Markle arrive at Nottingham train station this morning?ahead of their first official engagement together

Harry and Miss Markle talk as they arriving in Nottingham this morning on their first ever official royal visit?

Harry and Miss Markle talk as they arriving in Nottingham this morning on their first ever official royal visit?

Frank Shelton, 79, brought his barn owl Kim to meet Harry, joking: 'He'a brought his bird, so I've brought mine.'

Mr Shelton, from Carlton, Nottinghamshire, who had had his eight-year-old bird of prey since she was a chick, added: 'Harry and William are something special. I'm really happy for them.'

Yesterday, Harry met with Masedi from Sentebale, a #LetYouthLead advocate, ahead of World Aids Day

Yesterday, Harry met with Masedi from Sentebale, a #LetYouthLead advocate, ahead of World Aids Day

Aimee Vincent, 24, also from Nottingham, said she had watched the couple's engagement interview and couldn't believe how 'loved up' they looked.

Phillipa Stark, 31, was with her daughter Savannah, four.

She said: 'Harry really has put Nottingham on the map. We love the royal family and they look so genuinely happy together.'

Her friend, Sarah Deverill, 32, with eight-month-old Henry, added: 'It very exciting that they have chosen here to come to. They look so happy together.'?

Harry specifically chose to introduce his wife-to-be to public life in Nottingham as it is a city that is close to his heart.

In recent years he has spent a great deal of time working with youth groups, both publicly and in private.

His spokesman said the prince was 'looking forward' to introducing his fiancé to a community 'that has become very special to him'.

'Prince Harry is very much looking forward to the first place that she visits as his wife-to-be [which] is going to be a city he cares a lot about and has spent a lot of time in over the last few years. It's going to be a really lovely way to start [their life public life together],' he said.

After the walkabout, Harry, 33, and Meghan, 36, attended a Terrance Higgins Trust World AIDS day charity fair at the Nottingham Contemporary, followed by a visit to Nottingham Academy where they learned more about the work being done with young people in the area and?watched a performance of a 'hip hop opera'.

Nottingham Academy pupils Nico Ricci and Freddie Taylor, both 11, were among the kickboxers who shook hands with the couple.

Year 7 pupil Nico, from Mapperley, told reporters: 'I know that we had to show them our skills and I shook their hands but I can't remember what they said. It was nerve-racking.'

Freddie, who carried on sparring with Nico as Harry and Ms Markle chatted to their classmates, said: 'They said 'keep on practising your skills' and they were both really nice.'

Ms Stefanovic was presented with a framed picture of herself, Harry and Barack Obama - taken at the Chicago summit - by the couple.

Praising the prince's commitment to help people in the local area, the 30-year-old mentor said: 'He really is an amazing inspirational person.

'Meeting Meghan today was absolutely wonderful - the girls really took to her and their support is just fantastic for us.'

Fellow Full Effect mentor Cain Thomas, a ex-pupil of the school from nearby St Ann's, also praised the interest and support the Royal Foundation has provided in the area.

The 22-year-old mixed martial arts enthusiast, whose community group also runs a local girl's football team, said of Harry: 'I have met him like 20 times. He was just the usual - just being cool.

'On statistics we are the worst area for a number of things, knife crime being one of them - it's good for him to come here because people can lose hope.

'He has proper won me over. He does a lot for us and we appreciate it.'

After leaving the kickboxing session, Harry and Ms Markle were warmly applauded by pupils in the main hall as they took a seat side-by-side to watch a variety of on-stage acts.

The performers included rap artists, and four actors taking part in a short sketch which started with a couple arguing over whether to spread news of their relationship.

After the performances - organised with the help of Full Effect and the Community Recording Studio - the prince and his fiancee took to the stage to chat with the actors and singers.

Crowds gather outside the Nottingham Contemporary Arts Centre ahead of a visit by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle who are on their first royal engagement

A wellwisher  holds a hot water bottle as she stands in a crowd waiting to greet Prince Harry and his fiancee

A wellwisher holds a hot water bottle as she stands in a crowd waiting to greet Prince Harry and his fiancee

There is also a huge security presence in the East Midlands city for the historic royal visit for the couple

There is also a huge security presence in the East Midlands city for the historic royal visit for the couple

People hold U.S. and British flags as Harry and Meghan arrive in Nottingham for the official visit

People hold U.S. and British flags as Harry and Meghan arrive in Nottingham for the official visit

This card signed by well-wishers  handed to the couple today as they prepare for married life at Kensington Palace

This card signed by well-wishers handed to the couple today as they prepare for married life at Kensington Palace

Frank Shelton, 79, brought his barn owl Kim to meet Harry, joking: 'He'a brought his bird, so I've brought mine'

Frank Shelton, 79, brought his barn owl Kim to meet Harry, joking: 'He'a brought his bird, so I've brought mine'

Well wishers in Nottingham sign an engagement card for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Others brought sweets for them

Well wishers in Nottingham sign an engagement card for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Others brought sweets for them

Well-wishers waved Union Flags for Harry and Meghan, who this week announced they were getting married revealed it would be St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle in May

Well-wishers waved Union Flags for Harry and Meghan, who this week announced they were getting married revealed it would be St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle in May

While three-hours of hand-shaking and smiling on your first day at work would be a daunting prospect to many, Miss Markle's assured public appearances so far suggest she will take the day in her stride.

From the moment their engagement was announced on Monday, the actress has made clear that she wants to be a princess who makes a difference.?

Today's visit, less than two weeks after she arrived from Canada to live with Harry in London, will herald what Kensington Palace has described as an intensive six month 'tour' of the UK, in order to get to know her adopted country, its communities and its people.

HARRY AND MEGHAN SET FOR A WHIRLWIND WORLD TOUR AFTER 2018 ROYAL WEDDING?

The couple will embark on a world tour straight after their wedding in May?

The couple will embark on a world tour straight after their wedding in May?

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will travel the world after tying the knot next May.?

The Royal couple will visit Sydney in October where the Prince will host his fourth Invictus Games.

They will also visit key Commonwealth country Canada, where Meghan lived for six years.?

The newly-engaged couple are also expected to visit the US and could lend their support to the Walk of America for injured veterans in June.?

Meghan, 36, will be getting to know her new home in the UK and will carry out her first royal duties in Nottingham.?

Harry, 33, is also set to introduce her to Sentebale - his AIDS orphans charity set up in memory of Princess Diana and based in Lesotho, Africa.?

The future duchess will also be introduced to HIV charity the Terrence Higgins Trust and the Full Effect youth programme.?

A spokesman told The Mirror: 'Prince Harry has spent a significant amount of private and public time in the city and is looking forward to introducing Ms Markle to a community that is very sentimental to him.'?

Unlike the Duchess of Cambridge who, while undertaking a small number of engagements before and after her wedding to Prince William in 2011, made clear that she wanted to concentrate on being a military wife with him on Anglesey for the first year of married life, Meghan said in her official engagement interview on Monday: 'Now being boots on the ground in the UK I'm excited to just really get to know more about the different communities here, smaller organisations who are working on the same causes that I've always been passionate about….and also being able to go round the Commonwealth, I think it's just the beginning.'

She has long championed a number of her own charitable causes, including World Vision Canada, and UN Women, which she is now 'regretfully' giving up.

Kensington Palace said she had made clear she wanted to start her life with the Queen's grandson in Britain 'with a clean slate' and devote herself to the issues that matter in the UK, a decision Harry has supported her in.

Her first formal charity role will be as the fourth patron of William, Kate and Harry's own charity, The Royal Foundation, which enables the young royals to align themselves with groups working in areas such as young people, mental health, conservation and the military.

She and Harry are also, the Mail understands, are also being earmarked to head up the new Queen's Commonwealth Trust charity, which is in the early stages of being established.

The charity will be formally launched in 2018 in the lead up to the Commonwealth Summit in April. A spokesman said this week that the Commonwealth was a 'big priority' for the couple.

Aides say that Miss Markle does not plan to take on any charities of her own yet, but confirmed that will, inevitably, develop in time.

Her go-getting attitude and determination to 'hit the ground running', is certainly being seen as a break of fresh air in royal circles.

A royal spokesman said: 'Miss Markle is incredibly grateful for the opportunities she has had with World Vision Canada and with UN women. She has through those organisations had the chance to meet incredible organisations right around the world, people doing great grassroots work.

'But she has made the decision that she wants to start with a clean slate and focus on the UK and getting to know this country, travelling around the Commonwealth, and so the only role she will begin her royal life with is the Royal Foundation and that has been a decision that she has taken.

'Miss Markle has talked in the past about the issues she cares about and I am sure that those themes will continue in the future.

'But she has been very clear with us that her priority is getting around this country, learning about communities right around the UK and any particular themes she will pick up I'll leave her to talk about in her own time.'

Royal Engagement: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle finally announced their engagement after weeks of fevered speculation on Monday. The royal couple made their first public appearance hours after breaking the news in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace?

Royal Engagement: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle finally announced their engagement after weeks of fevered speculation on Monday. The royal couple made their first public appearance hours after breaking the news in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace?

Fifth in line to the throne Harry has been dating the American actress since summer 2016

Fifth in line to the throne Harry has been dating the American actress since summer 2016

In their first joint interview, Ms Markle, 36, said she did not even wait for the 33-year-old royal to finish the sentence before she said 'yes' - and it was 'so sweet and natural and very romantic'

In their first joint interview, Ms Markle, 36, said she did not even wait for the 33-year-old royal to finish the sentence before she said 'yes' - and it was 'so sweet and natural and very romantic'

Meghan rests her chin on her fist while looking adoringly at her husband-to-be, who cannot help but smile back while being filmed for their first TV interview last night

He added: 'The priority for her is the UK. Getting around the country and meeting those working at a grass roots level.

'She wants to spend this time learning about the UK. This is the country that is going to be her home now and she wants to spent time in the UK getting to know its towns and cities and smaller communities and that is what she is going to be doing.

'Prince Harry will still carry out a full programme of engagements, but she will join him from time to time. We are looking forward to building a programme for the two of them around the country. ' The couple's engagements in Nottingham on Friday will begin with a visit to the Nottingham Contemporary, which will be hosting a Terrance Higgins Trust World AIDS day charity fair.

Harry has long made clear his determination to take on the mantle of his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, by championing those with HIV/Aids and highlighting the needs for proper and regular testing.

Appearing on a Kensington Palace operational note for the first time, Miss Markle and her fiancé will enjoy a walkabout outside before meeting groups working in the field including Terrance Higgins Trust Nottingham, the African Institute for Social Development and Champions for Change.

The couple will then travel to Nottingham Academy where they will meet head teachers from local schools and well as people working for Full Effect, a programme working with children and young people in the deprived St Anne's area of Nottingham and supported by the Royal Foundation.

The charity supports children and young people from becoming involved in youth violence and crime through a combination of early intervention, mentorship and training Before they leave Harry is keen to introduce his fiancé to Chantelle Stefanovic, who mentors young people in the area after coming through a difficult childhood herself and has become a friend and source of inspiration to Harry.

They will also get to watch a performance put on by some of the Full Effect young people of their 'Hip Hopera'.

His spokesman said: 'He established the Full Effect programme through The Royal Foundation and is proud of the friendships and partnerships he has built there. His Royal Highness is looking forward to introducing Ms. Markle to a community that has become very special to him.

'Ms. Markle cannot wait to meet many of the young people Prince Harry has told her so much about.'?

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A moment of warmth: Harry stops his royal walkabout to make sure one of his youngest fans is well wrapped up in woolly hat against the cold?

Firmly wrapped up in a coat and woolly hat against the cold, this young child was probably unaware of the stature of the person they were meeting.

But Prince Harry was able to put the nervous-looking youngster at ease by waving to them and offering a high-five during his walkabout in Nottingham today.

The 33-year-old royal shared the adorable moment with the child who clung onto the railings and smiled as Harry joked around and ruffled their hat.

Prince Harry was able to put the nervous-looking child at ease in Nottingham by talking to him

Prince Harry was able to put the nervous-looking child at ease in Nottingham by talking to him

The prince spoke to the young boy for about 20 seconds while other onlookers desperately tried for a glimpse and photo of the royal during the visit.

Harry and his new fiancée Miss Markle received a rapturous welcome from the people of Nottingham as they began their public life together.

Just a few days after announcing their engagement, the couple were carrying out their first joint royal engagement.

The visit aims to raise awareness of HIV/Aids and efforts to tackle youth crime but it also gave the prince the opportunity to showcase his partner to the nation.

The prince offered the child a high-five during his walkabout in Nottingham this morning

The prince offered the child a high-five during his walkabout in Nottingham this morning

The prince spoke to the youngster for about 20 seconds and they broke into a smile

The prince spoke to the youngster for about 20 seconds and they broke into a smile

Harry speaks to well-wishers as he visits Nottingham with Meghan Markle this morning

Harry speaks to well-wishers as he visits Nottingham with Meghan Markle this morning

Harry chose Nottingham, a city he knows well, for their first walkabout, a mainstay of royal engagements.

The couple, who arrived by train, began their tour with a civic welcome at the National Justice Museum in Nottingham's historic Lace Market district.

Ahead of their arrival, hundreds of curious and excited onlookers had packed the streets. The visit was Harry's third public trip to the city since October last year.

It is the first official engagement by the couple in what will be a six-month tour of the UK, allowing the American former actress to get to know her new home.?

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'Over here, Megs!' Alison Hammond leaves This Morning viewers in stitches with her desperate attempts to catch royal couple's attention (and her shrieks prompt Prince Harry to swerve her mike)

Everybody wanted a peek at Meghan Markle on her debut royal engagement in Nottingham today - and presenter Alison Hammond was no exception.

This Morning's roving reporter was so determined to catch the attention of Prince Harry's glowing bride-to-be she screamed, 'Megs! Megs! Megs!' as they walked past - much to the amusement of viewers watching home and co-hosts Ruth and Eamonn back in the studio.?

Her eagerness seemed to have the opposite of her desired effect on Harry, who appeared to duck away from her mike with a smile as he strode past.?

But Alison had more luck with Meghan, who heard Alison shriek 'congratulations' and replied: 'Thank you so much.'

As the reporter jumped up and down with glee, tickled viewers at home deemed the segment the 'funniest thing ever'.??

Alison Hammond tried to interview Prince Harry in Nottinghm but when he saw her microphone he told her to 'get that away from me'

Alison Hammond tried to interview Prince Harry in Nottinghm but when he saw her microphone he told her to 'get that away from me'

Alison joined crowds in Nottingham where Meghan and Prince Harry were due to attend their first official engagement as an engaged couple.

As soon as the former Big Brother contestant spotted the couple she began calling their names in the hope to catch their attention.

Prince Harry was chatting to well-wishers as Alison stood further back in the crowds when she started chanting his name.

At one point the cheeky presenter shouted: 'Harry, come get warmed up by me!'

Prince Harry and his new fiance Meghan Markle were in Nottingham for her first public engagement

Prince Harry and his new fiance Meghan Markle were in Nottingham for her first public engagement

The prince, 33, appeared to hear her and seemed amused by her enthusiasm.

But when she waved a microphone in his face, he shied away instead moving to greet other royal fans.

Having failed to coax Harry over, the presenter tried her luck with the bride-to-be Meghan Markle who was a short way behind. ?

This Morning viewers found the interview hilarious and called Alison a 'national treasure'

This Morning viewers found the interview hilarious and called Alison a 'national treasure'

She encouraged the crowd to chant Meghan's name before she switched to 'Megs' for short.

Meghan approached ?Alison who congratulated her on the news.

Meghan sweetly said 'thank you so much!' before going off to meet more members of the public.

Alison was thrilled to have finally met the couple and started giving out high fives to the crowd around her.

Harry refused to speak to Alison but seemed to find her enthusiasm quite funny

Harry refused to speak to Alison but seemed to find her enthusiasm quite funny

After Harry moved on Alison tried to get Meghan to stop by for an interview by chanting 'Megs'

After Harry moved on Alison tried to get Meghan to stop by for an interview by chanting 'Megs'

Alison managed to congratulated Meghan on the engagement and the actress thanked her

Alison managed to congratulated Meghan on the engagement and the actress thanked her

This Morning presenter Eamonn Holmes joked: 'I think it's marvelous the protocol being observed there by our royal correspondent Alison Hammond today.'

But viewers were loving Alison's enthusiastic interview, and took to Twitter to praise the moment.

One tweeted: 'Alison is hilarious she's brilliant truly.'

The visit to Nottingham today aims to raise awareness of HIV/Aids and efforts to tackle youth crime

The visit to Nottingham today aims to raise awareness of HIV/Aids and efforts to tackle youth crime

Ms Markle was wrapped up against the cold in a long dark blue coat by Mackage, and boots

Ms Markle was wrapped up against the cold in a long dark blue coat by Mackage, and boots

'Alison Hammond what a star today that's how to try and get a interview,' another posted.

A third wrote: 'Prince Harry swerving Hammond on This Morning was excellent viewing. Hero.'

'In a world full of misery and hopelessness (for me, anyway) Alison makes life a little more bearable,' a fourth agreed.?

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They really ARE the perfect match! Prince Harry co-ordinates with Meghan in a scarf the same shade as her camel skirt (and she's championing ANOTHER Canadian brand in her Mackage coat)?

As they arrived in Nottingham for their first public engagement as a couple Meghan Markle and her husband-to-be Prince Harry appeared to be the perfect match.

However, it was not just the couple who went hand in hand with the prince and his fiance appearing to have colour coordinated their ensembles.

Meghan flew the flag for Canada, where she had lived until recently, in a navy double breasted coat from the Canadian brand Mackage.?

It seems that the bride-to-be is keen to bring a little of her former hometown of Toronto with her to London, having also opted for a Canadian brand for her engagement photo-call.?

Meghan, who has moved from Toronto to be with her future husband in London, chose Canadian brand Mackage for their first official engagement together?

Meghan, who has moved from Toronto to be with her future husband in London, chose Canadian brand Mackage for their first official engagement together?

Happy couple: But the future royal's boots - believed to be from Kurt Geiger - were a nod to the British high street

Happy couple: But the future royal's boots - believed to be from Kurt Geiger - were a nod to the British high street

The Meghan effect! The bride-to-be's navy coat has already sold out on a number of websites?

The Meghan effect! The bride-to-be's navy coat has already sold out on a number of websites?

The white wool coat - which instantly sold out - was from Line The Label. Founded in 2000 by friends John Muscat And Jennifer Wells, the brand is known for its stylish knitwear and use of sumptuous materials and counts actresses Sarah Jessica Parker and Kate Bosworth among its A-list fans.

On Friday Meghan opted for another stylish winter coat as she joined Prince Harry on a royal engagement for the first time, this time a navy, military-inspired number by Mackage that has previously been seen on the wife of Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Sophie.?

Taking a step away from the thigh skimming red-carpet looks that fans will be familiar with the bride-to-be opted for a full-length camel coloured skirt.

Embracing her new heritage the skirt is from British brand Joseph coming in at £595, while her handbag was by Scottish brand?Strathberry.

Meghan was seen carrying her handbag with her while meeting the crowds - something that Kate rarely does - while her engagement ring was on full display.?

The actress finished her ensemble with a pair of elegant black suede heeled boots, a change from the court shoes royal fans are used to seeing on the Duchess of Cambridge.?

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry appeared to be in perfect sync as they arrived in Nottingham for their first royal engagement on Friday

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry appeared to be in perfect sync as they arrived in Nottingham for their first royal engagement on Friday

Meghan flew the flag for Canada, where she had lived until recently, in a navy double breasted coat from the Canadian brand Mackage
She opted to wear no gloves in order to show off her engagement ring

Meghan flew the flag for Canada, where she had lived until recently, in a navy double breasted coat from the Canadian brand Mackage?

She and Harry opted for complementary colours in the form of navy coats with sand-coloured accents?

She and Harry opted for complementary colours in the form of navy coats with sand-coloured accents?

Wearing her brunette locks down in loose waves, she showed off her natural, glowing complexion as she arrived in the city.

It seems that Meghan may have also had an input when it came to Harry's wardrobe who stepped out in a tonally similar ensemble.?

The prince, 33, was also seen in a navy blue wool coat and his suede desert boots complimented the colour of Meghan's coat.

Shunning the traditional suit which is normally favoured by male members of the royal family for public engagements, Harry instead opted for a simple open collared white shirt.

Meghan wore her brunette tresses in loose waves for her initial engagement, and opted for a soft beauty look with a slick of berry lipstick

Meghan wore her brunette tresses in loose waves for her initial engagement, and opted for a soft beauty look with a slick of berry lipstick

He also appeared to accent the colour of Meghan's skirt ?wearing a scarf in a shade of sand that almost perfectly matched the 36-year-old's outfit.?

As the couple arrived, they walked towards a group of dignitaries with one arm around each other's backs.

The couple appeared in perfect sync as they ?moved along the seemingly endless line of well-wishers.

Members of the crowd called out Harry's name, while others held up camera phones to capture the moment, or stretched out their hands for the prince and his fiancee to shake.????

The couple appeared in perfect sync as they moved along the seemingly endless line of well-wishers

The couple appeared in perfect sync as they moved along the seemingly endless line of well-wishers

Taking inspiration from Justin Trudeau's wife??

The navy coat worn by Meghan today was previously worn by Justin Trudeau's wife.

The double-breasted number by Canadian brand Mackage was donned by Sophie Trudeau, 42, during a Remembrance Day service in?Ottawa last month.

She teamed the navy coat with a matching trilby hat and black polo neck underneath.

The Canadian prime minister's wife also added a black belt over the coat to cinch in her waist.?

Meghan, who lived in Toronto while filming Suits, seems to have a penchant for championing Canadian brands, having worn a white coat by Line The Label on Monday.?

Justin Trudeau's wife Sophie wore the same navy coat as Meghan during an engagement in Ottawa last month?

Justin Trudeau's wife Sophie wore the same navy coat as Meghan during an engagement in Ottawa last month?

The visit aims to raise awareness of HIV/Aids and efforts to tackle youth crime but it also gave the prince the opportunity to showcase his partner to the nation.

Harry chose Nottingham, a city he knows well, for their first walkabout, a mainstay of royal engagements.

The couple, who arrived by train, began their tour with a civic welcome at the National Justice Museum in Nottingham's historic Lace Market district.

Ahead of their arrival, hundreds of curious and excited onlookers had packed the streets, including avid fan Irene Hardman.

Meghan was carrying a £530 handbag by Scottish brand Strathberry in burgundy as she met with well-wishers?

Meghan was carrying a £530 handbag by Scottish brand Strathberry in burgundy as she met with well-wishers?

The 81-year-old is well-known for handing bags of Haribo sweets to Harry, and first presented his father, the Prince of Wales, with two bags - the other for brother William - 20 years ago.

She said: 'It is absolutely wonderful and fantastic, and we're privileged they've chosen Nottingham to be their first official engagement.'

The city and its people are close to Harry's heart, with the visit his third public trip there since October last year.

It is the first official engagement by the couple in what will be a six-month tour of the UK, allowing the American former actress to get to know her new home.

Holly Burdett, who is originally from West Bridgford, Nottinghamshire, but now lives in Sydney, Australia, flew back to the UK earlier this month on a 'gamble' that the couple would announce their engagement.

She said: 'It paid off - I knew they'd be in London, doing something, and it's been about a year since they started properly dating.'

She joked: 'I always thought I'd marry Harry but you can't win them all.

'As long as they're happy, that's all that matters.'?

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'Good on you Harry!' Chelsea Pensioners including Princess Diana's old driver congratulate Meghan and the prince as new royal couple prepare for first official engagement today

Prince Harry's beloved Chelsea Pensioners have sent a card congratulating him on his engagement to Meghan Markle as the couple start their royal duties together today.

Among the well-wishers is retired soldier Patrick McGurk, who drove Harry and his brother William around with his mother Diana in the 1980s.

The world famous Chelsea Pensioners are a group close to the young royal's heart having visited them regularly for around the past decade and in return they said today: 'Good on you Harry!'.

The pensioners also posted this well-wish photograph on their Facebook page after the couple announced their engagement

The pensioners also posted this well-wish photograph on their Facebook page after the couple announced their engagement

The Chelsea Pensioners are a group close to Prince Harry's heart having visited them regularly (pictured in 2011)

The Chelsea Pensioners are a group close to Prince Harry's heart having visited them regularly (pictured in 2011)

The pensioners have sent this card (cover pictured) to the couple that has been delivered to Kensington Palace?

The pensioners have sent this card (cover pictured) to the couple that has been delivered to Kensington Palace?

The card contains around 30 messages from Harry and Meghan's friends at the?Royal Hospital, Chelsea

The card contains around 30 messages from Harry and Meghan's friends at the?Royal Hospital, Chelsea

The card wishes the couple 'the very best of British' for their future marriage with one well-wisher referring to them affectionately as 'Harry and Meg'.

Chelsea Pensioner Mable writes poignantly: 'Many many congratulations to your Royal Highness and Meghan on your engagement. You both have a special place in my heart. God bless you both'.

And David Griffin wrote a message using some lyrics from the famous Vera Lynn song: 'A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square' and told the couple: 'I may be right, I may be wrong, but I'm perfectly willing to swear, when you walk down the aisle next year, those nightingales will once again sing ion Berkeley Square'.

The card, signed by around 30 pensioners, will be delivered to Kensington Palace today.

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