Connect with us

HTML Image

i

Latest News

Crown Princess Mary: Australia celebrates an unexpected Queen

Published

on

When the world’s last reigning Queen announced her surprise abdication on live TV, history was also made in a country not so far away.

“I will hand over the throne to my son Crown Prince Frederik,” Margrethe II of Denmark said in her New Year address.

Her decision to make way for “the next generation” of Danish royals has sent ripples around the world.

But it has also delivered the first ever Australian-born Queen Consort – Frederik’s wife Princess Mary.

An unlikely meeting
Less than a month after Queen Margrethe took over the throne in 1972 following the death of King Frederik IX, a girl called Mary Donaldson was born on the other side of the world in a small Hobart hospital.

The daughter of a mathematics professor and an executive assistant who had emigrated to Australia from Scotland, Mary grew up in a middle-class suburban home alongside her siblings Jane, Patricia and John.

This photo taken on 24 August 2002 shows Denmark’s Queen Margrethe’s oldest son Crown Prince Frederik and his Australian partner Mary Elizabeth Donaldson attending a wedding – Baron Otto Reedtz-Thott’s marriage to Helle Zoefting – at Frederiksborg Castle Church in Hilleroed, Denmark. Denmarks’ Queen Margrethe announced in her New Years speech that she is abdicating on February 14, 2024. Crown Prince Frederik will take her place and become King Frederik the 10th of Denmark, while Australian born Crown Princess Mary will be Queen of Denmark. (Photo by KELD NAVNTOFT / Ritzau Scanpix / AFP) / Denmark OUTThis photo taken on 24 August 2002 shows Crown Prince Frederik and Mary Elizabeth Donaldson attending a wedding at Frederiksborg Castle Church in Hilleroed, Denmark. Photo: AFP
By most accounts she was a natural leader by the time she left high school – with her former principal telling the ABC in 2003 that Mary was known as an “engaging, very outgoing, very amiable” young woman.

“She was a popular student and stood out from the crowd,” an old teacher Geoff Lockhart, told the Sydney Morning Herald.

After graduating with a degree in law and commerce from the University of Tasmania, she had a high-flying career in advertising and then luxury real estate.

But it was a chance encounter in a rowdy Sydney watering hole during the 2000 Olympic Games that would ultimately turn her life upside down.

Denmark’s Crown Prince Frederik and Denmark’s Crown Princess Mary arrive ahead of a dinner at Amalienborg Castle in Copenhagen, on June 15, 2023. (Photo by Mads Claus Rasmussen / Ritzau Scanpix / AFP) / Denmark OUTDenmark’s Crown Prince Frederik and Denmark’s Crown Princess Mary arrive ahead of a dinner at Amalienborg Castle in Copenhagen, on 15 June 2023. Photo: AFP
As the story goes, a 28-year-old Mary had gone to the Slip Inn pub to meet some friends for a drink.

Several Europeans were among the group including Frederik, his brother Prince Joachim, his cousin Prince Nikolaos of Greece and Denmark, Princess Martha of Norway, and the now King of Spain Felipe VI.

There were no security details or prying paparazzi, and the fact that Mary and her friends were among royalty didn’t come up in conversation.

Instead, the most serious topic of debate was whether men looked better with or without chest hair.

“Half an hour later someone came up to me and said, ‘Do you know who these people are?'” Mary told the Australian comedian Andrew Denton in 2005, remembering the encounter.

“I gave Frederik my telephone number and he rang me the next day, so you could say something clicked. It wasn’t fireworks in the sky or anything like that but there was a sense of excitement,” she added.

They quickly struck up a long-distance relationship and by 2002, Mary decided to relocate to Denmark where she started learning Danish and accepted a job at Microsoft.

When the couple tied the knot two years later in Copenhagen Cathedral on 14 May, more than a million Australians woke up in the middle of the night to watch the ceremony live.

Back in Tasmania, students from Taroona High School – Mary’s alma mater – donned Viking helmets and tiaras for a celebratory royal supper.

“The Girl Who Charmed A Nation”, was the front-page headline carried by The Copenhagen Post that day, alongside a news poll declaring that five out of six Danes were certain she would one day make a great Queen.

The ‘next generation’
For most of her reign, Queen Margrethe has remained a popular figure in Denmark, and many expected her to keep the throne until death.

The longest-serving monarch in the nation’s history, she is known for her brightly-coloured clothing, love of archaeology and chain smoking.

This photo taken on August 23, 2018 shows the Danish Crown Prince couple, Frederik of Denmark (L) and Mary of Denmark (R), together with their four children, Princess Isabella, Prince Christian, Prince Vincent, Princess Josephine, posing during their visit to the Argjahamri school during an official visit to the Faroe Islands, in Tórshavn. Denmarks’ Queen Margrethe announced in her New Years speech that she is abdicating on February 14, 2024. Crown Prince Frederik will take her place and become King Frederik the 10th of Denmark, while Australian born Crown Princess Mary will be Queen of Denmark. (Photo by Mads Claus Rasmussen / Ritzau Scanpix / AFP) / Denmark OUTThis photo taken on 23 August 2018 shows the Danish Crown Prince couple, Frederik of Denmark (L) and Mary of Denmark (R), together with their four children, Princess Isabella, Prince Christian, Prince Vincent, Princess Josephine, during their visit to the Argjahamri school during an official visit to the Faroe Islands, in Tórshavn. Photo: AFP
In recent years she oversaw a string of reforms aimed at “future-proofing” the age-old institution – which holds no jurisdictional authority but remains symbolically important.

Most notably, she slimmed down the number of royals and restructured palace finances so that only the heir to the throne receives a state-funded salary.

Now, it will be up to Frederik and Mary to shape the next chapter.

Celebrated for their modern values, the pair have tried to give their children as normal an upbringing as possible by sending them to mostly state schools.

They’ve also thrown their weight behind a range of issues.

Prince Frederik has made climate change his life’s work, while Mary has gained recognition as an advocate for LGBTQI+ causes, maternal health and women’s reproductive rights.

“I’ve always had a strong sense of justice: that everyone should have the same opportunities, no matter where you come from,” she told the Financial Times in 2022.

This photo taken on September 11, 2022 shows Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark arriving for a gala dinner at Christiansborg Castle during the celebration of the Queen’s 50th anniversary in Copenhagen, Denmark. Denmarks’ Queen Margrethe announced in her New Years speech that she is abdicating on February 14, 2024. Crown Prince Frederik will take her place and become King Frederik the 10th of Denmark, while Australian born Crown Princess Mary will be Queen of Denmark. (Photo by Mads Claus Rasmussen / Ritzau Scanpix / AFP) / Denmark OUTThis photo taken on 11 September 2022 shows Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark arriving for a gala dinner at Christiansborg Castle during the celebration of the Queen’s 50th anniversary in Copenhagen, Denmark. Photo: AFP
As millions of Danes bid farewell to the only Queen they’ve ever known, the transition of power – which is set to take place on 14 January – will likely be a moment mixed with both sadness and celebration.

“It is my hope that the new King and Queen will be met with the same trust and devotion which have fallen to my lot,” Margrethe said in her abdication speech. “They deserve it! Denmark deserves it!”

In Australia, though, Mary – despite renouncing her citizenship long ago – is already being celebrated as a national “ambassador”.

“I look forward to watching the next generation [of royals] and Tasmania’s own born Queen lead Denmark’s future,” the state’s Premier Jeremy Rockliff said in a statement.

“We are so proud.”

– This story was first published by BBC

VIA RNZ

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Breaking News

Woman charged with murder after man found dead in Hamilton

Published

on

A 45-year-old woman has been charged with murder after a man died at a house in Hamilton early on Wednesday morning.

Police were called to an address on Cranmer Close, Rototuna at 2am, Detective Senior Sergeant Scott Neilson said.

There they found the man in a critical condition. Attempts by police and ambulance staff to resuscitate him were unsuccessful.

Police earlier said they would have a “significant” presence in the area while inquiries were made.

Neilson said the man and woman knew each other.

“Police are speaking with those involved and are offering support to the victim’s family.”

VIA RNZ

Continue Reading

Latest News

Malaysia’s 6th humanitarian aid to Palestine to depart Cairo tomorrow

Published

on

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the shipment will consist of 1,358 tonnes of essential aid, including medical supplies, hygiene kits, food provisions and essential items for infants.

“This special mission involves the delivery of 100 containers from Malaysia to Gaza, coordinated through the Malaysian Consultative Council of Islamic Organisations (Mapim) warehouse in Cairo, Egypt.

“I urge Malaysians to continue their unwavering support for the Palestinians, especially in light of the ongoing developments in Gaza. Our commitment to this cause should be steadfast, driven by principles rather than solely religious affiliations,” he told reporters at a press conference today.

This mission will include 20 delegation members who will spend 10 days in Cairo, making preparations and overseeing the delivery process to the Rafah border. The delegation was expected to return three days before Hari Raya Aidilfitri.

Zahid, who is the patron of this mission, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim will engage with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi to facilitate the delegation’s passage through the Sinai Peninsula and the Rafah border.

Anwar, who was expected to attend an event in Pahang today, made an unexpected appearance at the flag-off event to demonstrate his solidarity with the mission.

Present were Mara chairman Datuk Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki, National Disaster Management Agency director-general Datuk Khairul Shahril Idrus and the mission’s chief commissioner Sany Araby Datuk Abdul Alim Araby.

Zahid also announced that Umno will donate RM1 million to the mission.

This humanitarian aid was made possible through collaborative funding from six non-governmental organisations, spearheaded by the Mapim, alongside Cinta Gaza Malaysia, Iman Care Malaysia and Pertubuhan Glokal Ihsan Malaysia, as well as international organisations Federation of Islamic Associations New Zealand and the Al-Khair Foundation from the United Kingdom.

VIA NST

Continue Reading

Latest News

Chocolate prices expected to rise

Published

on

By Maytaal Angel and Maxwell Akalaare Adombila, Reuters

Major African cocoa plants in Ivory Coast and Ghana have stopped or cut processing because they cannot afford to buy beans, four trading sources said, meaning chocolate prices around the world are likely to soar.

Chocolate-makers have already increased prices to consumers, after three years of poor cocoa harvests, with a fourth expected, in the two countries that produce nearly 60 percent of the world’s cocoa.

Cocoa prices have more than doubled over the last year, scaling numerous all-time highs.

“We need massive demand destruction to catch up with the supply destruction,” Tropical Research Services’ Steve Wateridge, a world expert on cocoa, said.

Chocolate-makers cannot produce chocolate using raw cocoa and rely on processors to turn beans into butter and liquor that can be made into chocolate.

But the processors say they cannot afford to buy the beans.

A cacao is harvested for the beans inside which are fermented to make chocolate.

Photo: RNZ/Supplied

State-controlled Ivorian bean processor Transcao, one of the country’s nine major plants, said it had stopped buying beans because of their price.

It said it was still processing from stock, but did not say what capacity it was running at. Two industry sources said the plant was almost idle.

They asked not to be named because they were not authorised to speak publicly on the issue.

One of the two sources said more major state run plants could shut soon in top grower Ivory Coast, which produces nearly half the world’s cocoa.

The same two sources said even global trader Cargill struggled to source beans for its major processing plant in Ivory Coast, halting operations for about a week last month. Cargill did not respond to a request for comment.

In No. 2 cocoa grower Ghana, most of its eight plants, including state-owned Cocoa Processing Company (CPC), have repeatedly suspended work for weeks since the season started in October, two separate industry sources said.

CPC said it is operating at about 20 percent of capacity because of the shortage of beans.

Disruption at the farm gate

The price rally has derailed a long-established mechanism for global cocoa trade, through which farmers sell beans to local dealers who sell them on to processing plants or global traders.

Those traders then sell beans or cocoa products – butter, powder and cocoa liquor – to global chocolate giants such as Nestle, Hershey, and Mondelez.

In normal times, the market is heavily regulated – traders and processors purchase beans from local dealers up to a year in advance at pre-agreed prices. Local regulators then set lower farmgate prices that farmers can charge for beans.

However, in times of shortage like this year, the system breaks down – local dealers often pay farmers a premium to the farmgate price to secure beans.

The dealers then sell the beans on the spot market at higher prices instead of delivering them at pre-agreed prices.

As global traders rush to purchase those beans at any price to meet their obligations with the chocolate firms, local processors are often left short of beans.

Ivorian and Ghanian authorities normally try to protect local plants by issuing them with cheap loans or by limiting volumes of beans that global traders can purchase.

This year, however, plants are not getting the cocoa they pre-ordered and cannot afford to buy at higher spot prices.

Already, chocolate-makers have raised prices. US retail stores charged 11.6 percent more for chocolate products last year compared with 2022, data from market research firm Circana shows.

The International Cocoa Organisation (ICCO) expects global cocoa production will fall by 10.9percent to 4.45 million metric tons this season.

Grindings – a measure of demand – will fall by 4.8 percent to 4.78 million as processors struggle to buy beans, and supply less butter at a higher price to chocolate-makers, which in turn raise prices.

The supply-demand mismatch will leave the market with a deficit of 374,000 tons this season, up from 74,000 tons last season, according to the ICCO.

This means processors and chocolate firms will have to draw on cocoa stocks to fully cover their needs. The ICCO expects global cocoa stocks to fall to their lowest in 45 years by the season end.

Wateridge of Tropical Research said the cocoa market could post another deficit next season based on the severity of bean disease in West Africa.

The market has not seen four successive years of deficit since the late 1960s, ICCO data shows.

– This story was first published by Reuters
VIA RNZ

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2022 The Buzz: Powered by Apna Network Limited - Concept by Digital Hub NZ