Prince William and Kate Middleton are engaged and will marry next year, Clarence House announced today.
The announcement came after speculation reached fever pitch following a visit by Kate's parents to the Queen's Scottish estate last month.
The invitation was seen as a clear sign that the couple were poised to announce they were marrying and it was revealed today they became engaged in Kenya in October.
They have been together for eight years and have recently been spending much of their time in north Wales where William is a search and rescue pilot.
Their wedding, scheduled for 2011, will be the biggest royal event since the wedding of William's mother and father in the 80s.
Clarence House said: 'The Prince of Wales is delighted to announce the engagement of Prince William to Miss Catherine Middleton. 'The wedding will take place in the Spring or Summer of 2011, in London. Further details about the wedding day will be announced in due course.
'Prince William and Miss Middleton became engaged in October during a private holiday in Kenya. 'Prince William has informed The Queen and other close members of his family. Prince William has also sought the permission of Miss Middleton's father.
'Following the marriage, the couple will live in north Wales, where Prince William will continue to serve with the Royal Air Force.