Elizabeth Mary II to snub Sydney on Australia visit

Queen to snub Sydney on Australian visit

Sept 24 2011

THE Queen is to spend 10 days in Australia next month – but she has given NSW a right royal snub.

The elderly monarch and the Duke of Edinburgh will instead spend their time travelling between Perth, Canberra, Melbourne and Queensland.

The Queen’s decision to bypass the state is causing some consternation in the first state since it is unlikely she will visit Australia again.

Royal observers believe her lengthy and wide-ranging itinerary, from October 19 to 29, indicates she will not visit next year, her Diamond Jubilee.

“The Queen is 85-and-a-half and the Duke is 90 so you can imagine they don’t have too many long-haul trips left in them,” said Joe Little, managing editor of British royal magazine Majesty.

“Even travelling in the way they do is bound to be a strain.”

It will be the Queen’s 16th visit to Australia and her first in six years.

She became the first reigning monarch to set foot on Australian soil when at 27 she spent eight weeks touring the country in 1954.

During that trip the royal couple took more than 30 flights and 207 road trips as they criss-crossed the nation, reportedly providing 75 per cent of Australia’s population a chance to see the Queen.

This tour will be more low-key and is likely to be made up of hospital and charity engagements, a meeting with Julia Gillard, an official lunch or dinner in her honour and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Perth.

The Queen is patron of many Australian organisations, including Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital and the Scout Association.

“A full list of the Queen’s engagements and undertakings during her Australian visit will be released next week,” a Buckingham Palace spokeswoman said yesterday.

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