Prince Harry Is Getting Married :Time for Themed Mugs and Nightclub Tours.


The cameras had barely finished flashing on the newly engaged Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. But Emma Bridgewater, a British ceramics manufacturer, was already making a mug to commemorate the royal moment.

The next week, just under 1,000 mugs — with “Harry & Meghan are engaged,” and the date of the announcement on them — were on sale. They retailed online for around 20 pounds, or $27, and sold out within 24 hours.

From crockery emblazoned with official portraits to solar-powered toys with the queen’s characteristic wave, Britain’s monarchy is big business. And that royal economy, normally catering to tourists and enthusiasts, kicks into high gear around major events.

“It’s a flash of color in a rather gray world,” said Emma Bridgewater, the eponymous founder of the ceramics company.

Britain’s royal family will contribute an estimated £1.8 billion to the country’s economy this year, according to Brand Finance, a consulting firm. The bulk of that was £550 million from tourism. Brand Finance estimates that travelers in town for Prince Harry’s wedding, scheduled for the spring, will bring an additional £500 million next year. Roughly one-tenth of that amount is expected to come from merchandise sales.

Enthusiastic collectors like Margaret Tyler are a discerning audience.

A dedicated royalist, Ms. Tyler, 73, has filled her home in northwest London with commemorative items, including a copy of the Issa dress that Kate Middleton wore during the announcement of her engagement to Prince William, and a little glass dish with a picture of Queen Elizabeth II that started her collection. One of her rooms is dedicated solely to Princess Diana, and another to the queen, which she rents out for £75 a night. Insurers have valued her collection at £40,000.