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Kate and William spend a third day in Canada

3 July 2011 28,404 No Comment

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge today fulfilled one tradition associated with royal tours to Canada whose origin goes back decades – tree planting.

Their Royal Highnesses followed in the footsteps of a long line of royal couples who have planted trees as a living memento of their visit to the Commonwealth country.

The list of previous members of the monarchy who have turned gardener and used a spade to help set a young tree on its way stretches back more than 70 years.

The Duke’s great-grandparents George VI and Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother took part in a tree planting ceremony during their tour of Canada in 1939.

A further 15 have been planted by royal hands with everyone from The Duke’s parents, The Prince and Princess of Wales, to his grandparents, The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh, following the tradition. In 2009 The Prince of Wales The Duchess of Cornwall planted a tree during their Royal Tour.

They have all been established in the royal grove area in the grounds of Rideau Hall in Ottawa – the official residence of the Governor General, The Queen’s representative in Canada.

The tree planting was a first for The Duchess but The Duke has performed the ceremony in New Zealand and Australia.

Their Royal Highnesses will ceremonially plant a Canadian hemlock – a tree native to the Rideau Hall forest and known to live upwards of 800 years. This tree will serve as an ongoing symbol of their love and marriage.

A similar tree was planted in 2009 by Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan during their state visit to Canada, on the occasion of their 50th wedding anniversary.

Afterwards Their Royal Highnesses visited the Canadian War Museum to meet veterans of the Second World War, the Korean War, peacekeeping missions and Afghanistan and their families, including Canadian war brides of the Second World War. The visit is aimed at honouring those who have contributed to the building of Canada.

The Canadian War Museum (CWM) is Canada’s national museum of military history. Its exhibitions and public programs have a single overriding objective: to help all Canadians understand their country’s military history in all its personal, national, and international dimensions.

After the visit to the Museum, The Duke and Duchess departed for Quebec, where they visited the Saint Justine University Hospital Centre.

The centre is dedicated to the health of mothers, children and adolescents.

Later in the day, The Duke and Duchess will visit a cooking workshop at the Institut de Tourisme et D’Hotellerie du Quebec (ITHQ).

The aim of this engagement is to showcase an institution renowned for its know-how and innovative approach to tourism and the hotel industry. The ITHQ contributes to making Montréal a gastronomic capital in North America and a destination renowned for its outstanding hospitality.

The couple will spend the night on HMCS Montréal travelling to Quebec City.

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