Saturday 18 August 2007

Queen of Canada in the United Kingdom

The following question has been posted in a monarchist newsgroup:

"On Remembrance Day 2003, HM The Queen of Australia opened a war memorial to the Australian dead of the two World Wars in London, UK. In attendance were her prime minister, John Howard, and the British prime minister, Tony Blair. As she was acting in her Australian capacity, I presume that she vetted her speech with the Australian - and not the British - government. I wonder if there are other examples of HM acting publicly in the UK as a "foreign" queen, or whether this was a unique event in that regard?"

This is an interesting question. I do not know how often the Queen of
Australia has visited London but the Queen of Canada has been present in London on a number of occasions.

The Canadian Queen opened a war memorial to the Canadian war dead in London in 1994. Located next to Buckingham Palace close to the Canada Gates in Green Park, the Canadian memorial inspired the later Australian, Indian & Caribbean and New Zealand memorials around Hyde Park Corner. The Canadian War Memorial consists of large stone slabs embedded with bronze maple leaves over which runs a steady stream of water. The memorial points to Halifax, Nova Scotia (the point of departure for most Canadian soliders).

At the unveiling The Queen of Canada was accompanied by her Prime Minister (Jean Chretien) and also by the British Prime Minister (John Major) as well as several members of the Royal Family who were Colonels-in-Chief of Canadian regiments - Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, the Duke of Edinburgh, the Duke of York, the Princess of Wales, Princess Margaret, the Duke of Kent and Princess Alexandra. The two Colonels-in-Chief who did not attend were the Prince of Wales and Countess Mountbatten of Burman. The Duke of York was attired in his Canadian military service uniform.

HM Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada was also in London (and on Canadian territory) a few years ago when she visited the recently renovated Canada House in Trafalgar Square. The Queen of Canada has also received Canadian Governors General and the provincial Lieutenant Governors at Buckingham Palace, Balmoral and Windsor.

I do not know how often London has been visited by the Queens of New Zealand, Jamaica, Barbados, The Bahamas etc....

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