The Travelling Windsors
As was announced earlier, the British Royal Family will be undertaking a series of official visits this year to mark Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee. Currently, the Earl and Countess of Wessex and Prince Harry are in the Caribbean, visiting various Commonwealth countries in the region.
The Earl and Countess of Wessex’s trip began on February 21st, in St Lucia. The couple spent two days on the small island, visiting schools and meeting with officials. It was then on to Barbados, where Edward and Sophie paid a visit to the Parliament building in Bridgetown, and the University of the West Indies on February 23rd. During the university visit, Edward and Sophie were given the chance to speak with the university’s student leaders. The following day, Prince Edward presented The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Golden Standard Awards to several youths at a reception at Barbados’s Goverment House. While in Barbados, a visit to a Jewish synagogue and a state dinner hosted by the Governor-General were also on the agenda. On to St Vincent and the Grenadines on February 25th, and the Earl was charged with opening the Jubilee Garden in Port Elizabeth.
In Grenada on February 27th, the Earl and Countess unveiled a plaque at the Botanic Gardens in St David to mark the Jubilee visit, before being guests of honour at a state lunch held on Spice Island by the Governon-General of Grenada, Sir Carlyle Glean. For the two following days, the duo were in Trinidad and Tobago. Edward and Sophie attended a luncheon at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann’s Port. The Earl then visited the Belmont Boys School, while the Countess visited the Princess Elizabeth Centre for Physically Handicapped Children. Prince Edward presented some more Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Gold Awards to students while in the Port of Spain. Also on February 29th, the Earl and Countess were present at a military parade.
On March 3rd, the Earl and Countess were welcomed by the Governor-General of St Kitts and Nevis, Sir Cuthbert Sebastian, in Port Zante. Following an official welcoming ceremony, Edward and Sophie presided over the renaming ceremony of the St Kitts National Capital Park, now called the Royal Basseterre Valley Park. Cultural performances and hospital visits filled the remainder of the day.
Prince Harry began his trip in Belize last Friday, where he was greeted at the airport by the Governor-General of Belize, before heading to the Governor-General’s residence. Harry attended a street party in the evening, where he mixed with locals and enjoyed samples of local rum and beer, before joining in on the daning. In a short speech, he said “the Queen of Belize” sent her warmest wishes and was sorry she could not come herself – therefore leaving everyone stuck with him. The following day, March 3rd, the Prince toured the Mayan ruins of Xunantunich, which were abandoned by its citizens around AD 950-1000. In the afternoon, Prince Harry launched a Jubilee Canoe on the Mopan River and met with World War II veterans at the Price Barracks. He then headed over to the Bahamas in the evening.
On March 4th, Prince Harry began his visit to the Bahamas with a church service at the Christ Church Cathedral in Nassau decked out in his dashing No. 1 Tropical Dress of The Blues and Royals. Later, he toured an art exhibition in Rawson Square, where he was presented with a portrait of himself. A walkabout allowed Harry to meet locals. A visit to the Royal Bahamian Defence Force concluded the day’s events. Then yesterday, Harry visited the National Athletics Stadium where he attended a youth rally.
Prince Harry will continue on to Jamiaca and Brazil in the coming days.The United Kingdom
Tagged Barbados, Belize, Children, Education, Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee, Grenada, Hospital, Official Visit, Patronage, Prince Harry of Wales, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, The Bahamas, The Countess of Wessex, The Duke of Edinburgh's Award, The Earl of Wessex, Trinidad and Tobago.