Planner to marry Japanese princess

Imagine if a town planner ended up marrying Prince William or Harry.

The "Royal" of the RTPI would take on added meaning. This is set to happen in Japan, where Princess Sayako, the only daughter of Emperor Akihito, is due to marry Yoshiki Kuroda, a town planning official in the Tokyo Metropolitan Government.

The 39-year-old former banker is expected to marry the princess next year, with the emperor and empress reportedly having given their blessing.

The two were childhood friends and went to the same university in the Japanese capital. Kuroda left the banking profession in 1997 to take up a post at the city government and currently works in the urban development bureau's construction industry section.

The downside for the princess is that, under Japanese law, she will lose her royal status after the marriage. But could such a liaison happen here?

You never know - as a geography student at the University of St Andrews, Prince William could well have made friends with youngsters who are destined for the planning profession.

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