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Zara Phillips beams with joy as she shows off ring Mike Tindall designed

22 DECEMBER 2010

Zara and Mike: A perfect match

Just weeks after Prince William presented his bride-to-be Kate Middleton to the world, another royal couple were delighted to share their happy news.

On Tuesday Zara Phillips and Mike Tindall made their first public appearance since announcing their engagement – and they couldn't have looked more delighted.

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CLICK ON PHOTOS FOR GALLERY


In their typically understated style, the couple were casually dressed as they posed in the snowy gardens of their Gloucestershire home.

Zara beamed as she showed off the gorgeous diamond band that sealed their love.

Rather than choosing a family heirloom, as William did, Mike decided to design his own ring for his royal bride-to-be.

The beautiful piece of jewellery features a single solitaire diamond in the centre.

It sits on tens of pave set diamonds on a split shank or band made of platinum.

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CLICK ON PHOTOS FOR MORE PICTURES OF THE COUPLE

Experts said it was impossible to tell how much the ring was worth without knowing the quality of the diamonds or the jeweller.

Zara said that it came as a complete surprise when Mike asked her to marry him on Monday at their home.

She said: "I was really shocked when Mike proposed but I am very happy", while he added: "I am delighted that Zara has agreed to marry me. We are both very excited about the next stage in our lives together."

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh also spoke of their "delight" at the happy news.

On the subject as to whether Mike had asked Captain Phillips for Zara's hand in marriage, a spokesman said it was a "private matter". But seeing as Mike has admitted to being a "traditional bloke" in past interviews, it's highly likely he asked permission.

There's still no word on where or when the couple will tie the knot, but it seems likely they will do it next year, meaning there'll be two British royal weddings in 2011.

Possible venues include St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle – where Zara's brother Peter Phillips married Autumn Kelly.

And the Queen is expected to offer a venue for the reception, such as Frogmore.

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