The Duke of Cambridge has recorded a message to show his and Kate’s support for the Australians and their firefighters, following the devastation of the recent bushfires. The video comes as the Australian government confirm they are talking to Kensington Palace about a royal tour for the Duke and Duchess.
Prince William praised the antipodean nation for their bravery and ability to support one another during the crisis the country is facing.
— Channel 7 (@Channel7) February 16, 2020
The video message was shown at the Fire Fight Australia charity concert at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium on Sunday night local time. The event raised $9 million (AUD) to help rebuild communities, homes and livelihoods.
Prince William says: “Hello, everyone. Catherine and I just wanted to say that we were very shocked and saddened to see the damage and devastation caused by the bushfires recently
“We know it’s been a terrible time for all of those affected by the bushfires. We want to commend the bravery and resilience of all Australians involved, particularly the volunteer firefighters who have put their lives on the line to protect lives, livelihoods and wildlife,” the future King commented.
“We think that’s been a fantastic effort all ’round by everyone down there looking after each other. We know there’s been lots of incredible acts of generosity as well and communities coming together to support each other.
“We wish you all the best for the rebuild and have a good evening.”
The message of support comes after the Australian government revealed it was in talks with Kensington Palace to organise a royal visit to the nation, especially to fire-ravaged communities.
Cabinet minister Simon Birmingham said that previous royal visits had lifted tourist numbers to Australia: “We hope that can all be locked down with an announcement from the royals pretty soon because it is going to be a great opportunity to remind the rest of the world that Australia is still a fantastic place to visit full of rich and amazing experiences,” he said earlier in February.
Birmingham explained that The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s 2018 tour produced a 120% lift in the numbers of visits to the Tourism Australia website, and subsequent 30% boost in bookings.
“There are real economic benefits,” he commented.
Prince William and Catherine last visited Australia in 2014, with a young Prince George. Prince Charles and Camilla headed Down Under in April 2018, and Prince Harry and Meghan in October 2018.