Prince William and Kate Middleton are set to visit Australia later this year in support of bushfire-affected communities, the first time they’ve made their way Down Under since 2014.
Nine-owned papers the Sydney Morning Herald and the Age report that negotiations between Kensington Palace and Prime Minister Scott Morrison have been underway for weeks, with the PM set to issue a formal invite later this week.
The tour will see the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visit along Australia’s coastal towns, spurring more international financial support to help bushfire-affected communities get back on their feet.
“We continue to be shocked and deeply saddened to hear about the wild fires that are destroying homes, livelihoods and wildlife across much of Australia,” the couple said in a statement in January.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with all the people and communities who are affected by this devastating event. We send our deepest condolences to the families and friends of those who have tragically lost their lives, and the brave firemen who continue to risk their own lives to save the lives of others.”
“We continue to be shocked and deeply saddened to hear about the wild fires that are destroying homes, livelihoods and wildlife across much of Australia.
Our thoughts and prayers are with all the people and communities who are affected by this devastating event”.
— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) January 4, 2020
It’s understood the royals did not want to visit earlier in the year out of concern for getting in the way of fire-fighting efforts. However, with several major fires now officially extinguished, thoughts are turning to the long clean-up effort and rebuild.
The last time Kate and Wills visited, it was 2014, and the newlyweds brought along a baby Prince George. This time, it’s not clear if George, 6, and his slightly less important siblings – Princess Charlotte, 4, and Prince Louis, 2 – will make the trip.
Kensington Palace has yet to confirm negotiations for the trip are in place.
It will also be Prince William’s fifth trip to Australia. Aside from the 2014 trip, he last visited Australia in 2011 following the devastating floods in Queensland. And if the more recent trip from the recently royally departed couple Prince Harry and Meghan Markle is anything to go by, where the royal couple go, crowds and crowds are sure to follow.Image: Getty Images