‘Fin­gers crossed Dubbo’s as good as they say!’

Dubbo Photo News - - Front page -

THE ex­cite­ment and mo­men­tum is build­ing around the re­gion as the date for the Royal Visit gets closer and closer.

The Duke and Duchess of Sus­sex (we know them best as Prince Harry and Meaghan) will be in Dubbo on Oc­to­ber 17 and, as Mem­ber for Parkes Mark Coul­ton said in Par­lia­ment last week, this will be a mo­men­tous oc­ca­sion.

At a time when Western NSW is still in the grips of a drought, Mr Coul­ton said “the Royal visit to Dubbo will be a very wel­come event in what is a chal­leng­ing time for many”.

The thought of roy­als vis­it­ing our zoo and walk­ing our streets has many lo­cals re­mem­ber­ing past vis­its, or their own brushes with roy­alty in other parts of the world.

Dubbo Photo News is com­pil­ing as many of your sto­ries and pho­tos as we can, to share with the whole city closer to the date of the royal visit.

In­side to­day, Dubbo Photo News journo Natalie Holmes shares her “brush with roy­alty” story. We’re on the look­out for more. De­tails on how you can share your story are also in­side.

Many of us have had a “brush with roy­alty”. As the ex­cite­ment builds in an­tic­i­pa­tion of the royal visit to Dubbo by the Duke and Duchess of Sus­sex next month, we’d love you to share your story of your own brush with roy­alty. To help get you in­spired to write, our own journo NATALIE HOLMES shares her favourite story.

I AR­RIVED in the United King­dom in the first week of April 2002. The peo­ple of Eng­land were in mourn­ing for the Queen Mother, who had passed away at the ripe old age of 101. My friend pointed out that she had ar­rived in sim­i­lar cir­cum­stances upon the death of Princess Diana some years ear­lier.

Un­til then, I didn’t know much about the Royal Fam­ily, other than Queen El­iz­a­beth II’S role as the rul­ing Monarch of Aus­tralia. Given that I had voted in a ref­er­en­dum for Aus­tralia to be­come a repub­lic, I had of­ten won­dered whether the Royal Fam­ily was an out­dated tra­di­tion for a na­tion as mod­ern and di­verse as Aus­tralia.

Caught up in the touristy cul­ture, I vis­ited the Tower of Lon­don where the story of the Roy­als is steeped in his­tory. There’s plenty of skele­tons in that fam­ily closet, which gave me an in­sight into some of the bolder per­son­al­i­ties who had ruled the Em­pire.

Af­ter mov­ing to Scot­land, I saw a dif­fer­ent side of the Monar­chy. In my ex­pe­ri­ence, the Scots didn’t have a lot of re­spect for these tra­di­tions and many would have liked to see Scot­land gain in­de­pen­dence. And yet, when they too had a na­tional ref­er­en­dum in 2014, more than half the pop­u­la­tion voted against the prospect.

I had vis­ited Buck­ing­ham

Palace and the Queen’s res­i­dence in Ed­in­burgh, Holy­rood Palace, where a Scot­tish friend used to joke that he could call in to ‘bor­row a cup of sugar from dear Betty’.

Then came the an­nounce­ment that the Queen would be vis­it­ing Ed­in­burgh. There was much ex­cite­ment in the air as we joined the hordes of peo­ple lin­ing the Royal Mile wav­ing Union Jack flags. This small na­tion for which William Wal­lace had fought sud­denly found it­self in the grip of Royal fever! When the Queen passed by in her horse-drawn car­riage, wear­ing a lime green coat, we all oohed, aa­hed and waved. It hap­pened so quickly that my friend’s de­scrip­tion ‘was a flash of green and a horse’s tail’ and she was gone. The next day, we made the front page of the Ed­in­burgh Evening News. It was cer­tainly spe­cial news to share with our mums back in Aus­tralia, and a spe­cial keep­sake to this day.

When it was an­nounced that the Duke and Duchess of Sus­sex would soon visit Dubbo, it was also ex­cit­ing news. As Royal fever builds in our fair city, it won’t mat­ter whether res­i­dents are Roy­al­ists or Repub­li­cans, it will no doubt be a mem­o­rable oc­ca­sion for ev­ery­one. z Have you had a brush with roy­alty? Share your story in 500 words or less – and in­clude a photo if you have one – by email­ing ed­i­tor@ dub­bopho­tonews.com.au or drop in/mail to 89 Winge­warra Street, Dubbo 2830.

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