Rat pack in North
I HAD heard stories of the ruthless London paparazzi but even I was shocked at the lengths to which the Poms will go to get a shot.
Prince-mania hit Cardwell in a big way over the weekend.
Wherever Prince William went, the world around him went frantic.
Local police did a fine job cordoning off areas for thousands of spectators and media outside the Cardwell Community Hall.
Inside, there would be a meetand-greet, while outside, proud Lions Club volunteers would whip up a sausage sizzle for their guest of honour.
I was told to take photos for the Queensland premier, and I would be given privileged access among the media scrum.
Excitement bubbled as locals waited patiently in the swelteri ng conditions t o catch a glimpse of His Royal Highness.
I had to wear a special blue cap to identify myself as one of the few who could get close to the prince without being killed by his security detail.
Residents and visitors stood back as the media surged forward while Prince William walked along, greeting people.
This is where things got crazy, as media people tripped over each other, struggling to get the best position for the ‘‘ money’’ shot, the tearjerker. Crews stood on top of each other and pushed and shoved.
Believe it or not, there is certain etiquette within the photographic community.
However, the Pommy ‘‘ rat paps’’ had gone well and truly overboard to the extent of resting their cameras on my head.
As the hot sun rose, so did tempers. The push and shove eventually became too much, as one sneaky step turned into a free-for-all. Police were called in and told to arrest anyone who wouldn’t move back or went in front of the police tape.
I guess it wasn’t all bad, apart from being picked up, manhandled and pushed to the side by some pasty foreign lad.
I retaliated with a few unladylike words, but t he prince was about to leave.
He flashed his pearly whites and waved goodbye and the rat pack disappeared.
EXCUSE ME: That’s one of my photos of Prince William, accompanied by Premier Anna Bligh, visiting Cardwell. But where did that camera come from, ruining my shot?