'Make me best man or I'm not coming'

Prince William named his rumbustious brother Harry as his best man yesterday, but banned him from arranging a raucous stag night. The groom-to-be broke with royal protocol by abandoning the traditional label ‘supporter’ used by his father and uncles – Harry is understood to have joked that he would refuse to participate unless he was awarded the ‘best man’ tag. Kate Middleton, meanwhile, has asked her sister and confidante Pippa to be maid of honour at the Westminster Abbey wedding on Friday, April 29.
But while Pippa, 27, is likely to plan a girls’ night in to avoid any pre-wedding controversy, Harry had originally been plotting a wild evening out in London to celebrate his brother’s ‘last night of freedom’.
Harry, 26, has recently returned to his old habit of tumbling out of nightclubs looking dishevelled on nights off from training to be an Apache helicopter pilot at RAF Middle Wallop, in Hampshire. At the weekend he was pictured puffy eyed and with his shirt gaping open after emerging at 3.30am from a burlesque show at a Soho gay bar, where he had partied with a harem of blonde girls. A week earlier, he drank cocktails with on-off girlfriend Chelsy Davy for five hours before the pair climbed into a car boot together to avoid being pictured.
Friends said suggestions for William’s stag night had ranged from another saucy burlesque act to exclusive use of close friend Guy Pelly’s club Public, a regular celebrity haunt. But William, 28, is thought to have insisted on a ‘private’ and ‘more mature’ long weekend outside the capital.
Choosing Harry as best man came as no surprise – but William has overturned royal tradition by having only one person and eschewing the term ‘supporter’. Prince Charles had his two brothers as supporters in 1981 and Prince Edward did the same in 1999. Prince Andrew had one man – Edward – in 1986, but still called him a supporter.William is thought to consider the supporter label outdated.
Princess Diana’s nephew the Honourable Louis Spencer,16-year-old son of Earl Spencer, is expected to be a ‘groomsman’, similar to an usher. Louis, who has the title Viscount Althorp and is heir apparent to his father’s £100million estate, has been handed the key role in a move designed to make Diana’s relatives feel included in the ceremony. It will mark his first foray into public life. Friends said the ‘quiet’ teenager has lived in the shadow of his gregarious sisters – Lady Kitty, 20, and 18-year-old twins Lady Amelia and Lady Eliza – and father Charles. Another groomsman is expected to be William’s friend Will van Cutsem, 31, a property investment manager.