Prince Charles, Camilla start whirlwind tour today of two Maritime provinces

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HALIFAX - A meeting with war brides at the historic port in Halifax where many arrived in Canada at the time of the Second World War caps a visit to the city today by Prince Charles and his wife Camilla.

The royal couple start the day with an official welcome where large crowds are expected to greet them at Grand Parade, a large square in front of city hall, before they tour a resource centre for military families.

The greeting at Grand Parade will also hear from Charles for the first time on this trip. He is scheduled to make four speeches during the tour.

The four-day tour, which began with the couple's arrival on Sunday night at Halifax airport, will see the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall also visit Pictou, N.S., Charlottetown and Winnipeg.

This is the couple's second Canadian tour since 2012, but it's the first time Camilla has visited the three provinces. Charles was last in Manitoba 18 years ago, and he visited the two Maritime provinces in 1983.

The meeting with war brides is at Pier 21, the home of Canada's National Museum of Immigration.

The port was the entry point to Canada by ocean liner for thousands of immigrants, refugees, war brides and children who were taken out of Britain. It was also the point where 500,000 Canadian military personnel left to serve during the Second World War.

Part of the tour is meant to commemorate Canada's past at a time when some hallmark anniversaries are approaching in the next five years, among them the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War and the 150th anniversary of the Charlottetown Conference, which eventually led to Confederation. The 75th anniversary of the start of the Second World War is also approaching.

There is a nod during the Halifax stop to a royal tradition that dates back 75 years when Charles's grandfather King George VI planted an English oak tree in the city's Public Gardens. The prince will plant another tree near the one planted by his grandfather.

A short stop is planned for Charles and Camilla later today in Pictou, N.S., where they visit a Celtic heritage festival before ending the day in Charlottetown.

The royal couple are scheduled to attend Charlottetown's celebrations for Victoria Day, which includes a theatre performance and a fireworks display.

Organizations: National Museum of Immigration

Geographic location: HALIFAX, Canada, Maritime Charlottetown Pictou Winnipeg Britain Public Gardens

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  • SOMETHING IN THE AIR
    May 19, 2014 - 14:41

    We think Pictou is beautiful. The biggest deterrent of staying there any length of time is that smell. Generally worse in Summer but a big problem with tourists and citizens alike we would think. Otherwise they have a beautiful little place.