Queen & Royal party conclude visit to Malta after CHOGM

Yesterday was the last day for the four Royals in Malta, concluding the State Visit as well as the CHOGM.

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall started their day by a walking tour in Imdina. The Royal couple were greeted by a crowd of admirers: Camilla was asked by someone in the crowd  what her impressions of Malta were and she said the she liked it.

Charles and Camilla then visited St Paul’s Cathedral for a service before leaving the island, and were greeted by the Archbishop of Malta. 

The Prince and Duchess then travelled to the Malta International Airport, where they departed at around 11.20am.

At the same time, The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh went to Heritage Malta. Her Majesty observed the restoration work of historically significant paintings, books and textiles and watched a display of Maltese culture.

In Kalkara, The Queen spoke of the Maltese spirit, as every visit reminds her “why Malta was awarded the George Cross in 1942 by my father, King George VI, for her valour – the first and only time it has been awarded to a country rather than an individual.”

She continued: “Since my first experience of Malta in 1949 as a young woman, I have seen this country evolve into a strong nation which plays an important role on the world stage. When Prince Philip and I returned in November 2007 at the time of our Diamond Wedding Anniversary, we could not help but be impressed by the progress and the sense of optimism.”

After her speech The Queen unveiled a commemorative plaque of her visit and received a gift from Heritage Malta chairman Joseph Buttigieg.

The Duke of Edinburgh was shown how the Restoration of the Maltese Archives is being done during the visit; he was quite interested and was seen reading a particular book.

After the visit, The Queen and Duke went on a boat trip and travelled from Kalkara to Valletta on a ‘luzzu’. They were accompanied by Environment Minister Leo Brincat, after being introduced to the Cottonera Mayors of Kalkara Birgu Cospicua and Senglea. The HMS Bulwark was waiting near the Customes House, and she was given a Royal salute before proceeding to the Marsa Racecourse.

Another stop saw The Queen plant a tree at San Anton gardens, near the one she had planted during her last visit in 2007. Queen Elizabeth II was given an official farewell by a guard of honour as she departed Malta, concluding the State Visit, which and coincided with the CHOGM, which Her Majesty opened on Friday.

The Royal couple left Malta to return to the UK shortly after 1pm.

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