The bride-to-be shocks local businesspeople near her hometown with invitations to her wedding

By Simon Perry and Liz Corcoran
Updated February 28, 2011 11:15 AM

Kate Middleton has given her local shopkeepers and businesspeople the thrill of a lifetime: An invitation to her royal wedding.

The grocers, postman and the local tavern owner near her native Bucklebury are among those who have received the coveted white card through the mail.

Hash Shingadia, who runs the Peaches Spar store in Upper Bucklebury with his wife Chan, was “over the moon,” he tells PEOPLE. “When my wife saw the envelope with the EIIR sign on the front, she screamed. It’s tremendous news, a total surprise. We were overjoyed.”

Shingadia and his wife have been in the village for 12 years and have known Kate for “about four,” he says. She pops in for groceries, canned drinks, magazines and candy – especially Haribo sweets. And she has been there with Prince William a few times as well.

“He’s very nice,” says Shingadia. “Just an ordinary guy.” And together, the newlyweds have “good chemistry,” he reports. “You can see they are a young couple in love.”

The shopkeeper adds that he had been teasing Kate about her upcoming nuptials – joking that if she was to get married he wanted plenty of notice in order to get his suit dry-cleaned. Now, he will have to do just that.

Another happy guest? John Haley, landlord of the Old Boot Inn, where the couple have tucked in for a drink.

“It was fabulous and to actually receive it!” he says of the invite, adding that he’ll be on double revelry duty April 29. “We’re having a massive celebration here in the evening so I’ll be back for that.”

Locals also say that Ryan Naylor, the Middleton’s mailman, has received an invitation. “The family is very close knit with the people in the area,” a palace source tells PEOPLE. “Hopefully a lot of people will be nicely surprised to be invited.”

And while kings and prime ministers around the world have received the gilded invitation, the event is shaping up to include VIPs of all different sorts.

“It’s not a completely star-studded event,” says the source. “Not many people are there [simply] because of the office they hold.”

Please note: Comments have been suspended temporarily as we explore better ways to serve you. Your opinion is important to us; you can find current discussions at