Prince Charles and Camilla pay visit to New Zealand after honour victims of Christchurch massacre

The Prince of Wales has praised the ‘courage’ of the people of New Zealand for its response to the Christchurch massacre during an historic visit to the grounds where the country’s founding document was signed.

Prince Charles was joined by the Duchess of Cornwall as he became the first British royal to visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds in 25 years on Wednesday.

Waitangi is a significant region in the history of New Zealand, where a treaty was signed on the relationship between the Maori and Crown, giving the indigenous people of the island the same rights as British subjects.

As part of the visit, Charles’ entourage brought with them a korowai cloak originally gifted to Queen Victoria by a Maori chief during a visit to the UK in 1863, with the cloak set to be displayed at a Waitangi museum on loan. 

During a speech given within the historic treaty grounds, Charles praised New Zealand for its commitment to settling issues arising from the document.

Prince Charles and Camilla share an intimate moment during their visit to the Te Kongahu, the Museum of Waitangi, during their visit to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds today

Prince Charles and Camilla share an intimate moment during their visit to the Te Kongahu, the Museum of Waitangi, during their visit to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds today

Prince Charles and Camilla share an intimate moment during their visit to the Te Kongahu, the Museum of Waitangi, during their visit to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds today

Prince Charles looks on during a formal Maori welcome at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, where a treaty was signed on the relationship between the Maori and Crown, giving the indigenous people of the island the same rights as British subjects

Prince Charles looks on during a formal Maori welcome at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, where a treaty was signed on the relationship between the Maori and Crown, giving the indigenous people of the island the same rights as British subjects

Prince Charles looks on during a formal Maori welcome at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, where a treaty was signed on the relationship between the Maori and Crown, giving the indigenous people of the island the same rights as British subjects

Prince Charles wears a traditional cloak as he performs a hongi with Mrs Titewhai Harawira during a visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds today

Prince Charles wears a traditional cloak as he performs a hongi with Mrs Titewhai Harawira during a visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds today

Prince Charles wears a traditional cloak as he performs a hongi with Mrs Titewhai Harawira during a visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds today

He said: ‘As long as I have known this country I have been struck by the commitment of her people to what is right, even when it is not easy.

‘New Zealand has faced up to the most painful periods of her past in a way that offers an example to the rest of the world.

‘She has done so with courage, compassion and tolerance, qualities which, it seems to me, define the New Zealand character and were displayed so conspicuously following the recent atrocity in Christchurch.

‘The Treaty settlements do not, and cannot, right all the wrongs of the past. They can only go so far in easing the pain that has been felt by so many people.’ 

During a speech given within the historic treaty grounds, Charles praised New Zealand for its commitment to settling issues arising from the document

During a speech given within the historic treaty grounds, Charles praised New Zealand for its commitment to settling issues arising from the document

During a speech given within the historic treaty grounds, Charles praised New Zealand for its commitment to settling issues arising from the document

Prince Charles was joined by the Duchess of Cornwall as he became the first British royal to visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds in 25 years

Prince Charles was joined by the Duchess of Cornwall as he became the first British royal to visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds in 25 years

Prince Charles was joined by the Duchess of Cornwall as he became the first British royal to visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds in 25 years

Charles and Camilla kicked off the third day of their official tour at Waitangi Treaty Grounds where they were greeted by the Chair of Waitangi National Trust Board and Chief Executive of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds. 

The royals were pictured paying their respects at the Hobson Memorial, before the Pōwhiri – a formal welcome – began, which included the short speech by The Prince of Wales.

After the ceremony, Charles planted a tree commemorating the visit.

The Waitangi Treaty Grounds is one of the most significant sites in the history of New Zealand. The Treaty is regarded as New Zealand’s founding document, and enshrines the relationship between Māori and the Crown. The Prince of Wales was the last Royal visitor to the Grounds in 1994.

oday Charles and Camilla kicked off the third day of their official tour at Waitangi Treaty Grounds where they were greeted by the Chair of Waitangi National Trust Board and Chief Executive of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds

oday Charles and Camilla kicked off the third day of their official tour at Waitangi Treaty Grounds where they were greeted by the Chair of Waitangi National Trust Board and Chief Executive of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds

oday Charles and Camilla kicked off the third day of their official tour at Waitangi Treaty Grounds where they were greeted by the Chair of Waitangi National Trust Board and Chief Executive of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds

The royals were pictured paying their respects at the Hobson Memorial,

The royals were pictured paying their respects at the Hobson Memorial,

The Pōwhiri - a formal welcome - began (right)

The Pōwhiri - a formal welcome - began (right)

The royals were pictured paying their respects at the Hobson Memorial, before the Pōwhiri – a formal welcome – began (right), which included a short speech by The Prince of Wales

The royals then continued their busy day with a reception with guests from the Māori community before posing for an official photograph. 

After viewing a tree which was planted by The Queen during her 1953 visit to New Zealand, Charles and Camilla toured the Treaty Grounds and viewed a demonstration of traditional Māori games, before touring the museum to view artefacts and visit the Digital Learning Lab.

The museum was opened in February 2016 and is formally named Te Kōngahu, a Ngāpuhi, which means unborn child. 

The name is said to represent the promise or potential of the new nation born at Waitangi through the signing of the Treaty.

Among the museum displays are christening gifts that were given to couple Hare and Hariata Pomare, by Queen Victoria. 

Prince Charles and Camilla Duchess of Cornwall received a formal Maori welcome at Waitangi Treaty Ground

Prince Charles and Camilla Duchess of Cornwall received a formal Maori welcome at Waitangi Treaty Ground

Prince Charles and Camilla Duchess of Cornwall received a formal Maori welcome at Waitangi Treaty Ground

As part of the visit, Charles' entourage brought with them a korowai cloak originally gifted to Queen Victoria by a Maori chief during a visit to the UK in 1863, with the cloak set to be displayed at a Waitangi museum on loan

As part of the visit, Charles' entourage brought with them a korowai cloak originally gifted to Queen Victoria by a Maori chief during a visit to the UK in 1863, with the cloak set to be displayed at a Waitangi museum on loan

As part of the visit, Charles’ entourage brought with them a korowai cloak originally gifted to Queen Victoria by a Maori chief during a visit to the UK in 1863, with the cloak set to be displayed at a Waitangi museum on loan

The royals were pictured paying their respects at the Hobson Memorial, before the Pōwhiri - a formal welcome - began, which included the short speech by The Prince of Wales

The royals were pictured paying their respects at the Hobson Memorial, before the Pōwhiri - a formal welcome - began, which included the short speech by The Prince of Wales

Camilla, dressed in a traditional cloak, watched on

Camilla, dressed in a traditional cloak, watched on

The royals were pictured paying their respects at the Hobson Memorial, before the Pōwhiri – a formal welcome – began, which included the short speech by The Prince of Wales (left) as Camilla, dressed in a traditional cloak, watched on

Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall visit the Te Kongahu, the Museum of Waitangi

Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall visit the Te Kongahu, the Museum of Waitangi

Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall visit the Te Kongahu, the Museum of Waitangi

The couple were part of a group of Māori taken to England in 1863 and presented to The Queen. 

On noticing that Hariata was pregnant, the Queen advised that she wished to be the child’s godmother, and that it be named either Victoria or Albert. 

Their son was born in London, and named Albert Victor Pomare. The Queen gave the child the christening set, consisting of an engraved goblet and cutlery, and christening gown, that are kept in the museum.

Meanwhile the Digital Learning Lab is one of three in the country delivering the state-of-the-art digital programme Raranga Matihiko – Weaving Digital Futures. 

The programme delivers innovative digital technologies to local students who have limited access to new learning opportunities.

Charles and Camilla kicked off the third day of their official tour at Waitangi Treaty Grounds

Charles and Camilla kicked off the third day of their official tour at Waitangi Treaty Grounds

They were greeted by the Chair of Waitangi National Trust Board and Chief Executive of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds

They were greeted by the Chair of Waitangi National Trust Board and Chief Executive of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds

Charles and Camilla kicked off the third day of their official tour at Waitangi Treaty Grounds where they were greeted by the Chair of Waitangi National Trust Board and Chief Executive of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds

The programme is fully funded by the Ministry of Education including teacher release days, transport to and from Waitangi, and use of all the technology available. 

In the programme students solve real-world problems while enriching their knowledge of their communities and regions. Through accessing national and local museum collections, learners can co-create and curate their own learning using digital technologies. 

No two programmes are identical, each class having one designed for them, providing support to each child as they develop digital fluency skills. This includes building students’ understanding of computational thinking, digital citizenship and literacy.

Charles and Camilla on on the third day of their official tour of the country, and on Friday will visit the city of Christchurch, where 51 Muslim worshippers were killed during a March massacre. 

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales receives a Hongi, a traditional Maori greeting, during a visit to Waitangi Treaty Ground

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales receives a Hongi, a traditional Maori greeting, during a visit to Waitangi Treaty Ground

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales receives a Hongi, a traditional Maori greeting, during a visit to Waitangi Treaty Ground

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall wear Maori cloaks, during their visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall wear Maori cloaks, during their visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall wear Maori cloaks, during their visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall wear Maori cloaks, during their visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall wear Maori cloaks, during their visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds

Powhiri, a Maori welcoming ceremony, is seen ahead of the arrival of Prince Charles

Powhiri, a Maori welcoming ceremony, is seen ahead of the arrival of Prince Charles

Powhiri, a Maori welcoming ceremony, is seen ahead of the arrival of Prince Charles

The Prince of Wales receives a hongi, the traditional Maori greeting, as he arrives with the Duchess of Cornwall for their visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds, the Bay of Islands

The Prince of Wales receives a hongi, the traditional Maori greeting, as he arrives with the Duchess of Cornwall for their visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds, the Bay of Islands

The Prince of Wales receives a hongi, the traditional Maori greeting, as he arrives with the Duchess of Cornwall for their visit to Waitangi Treaty Grounds, the Bay of Islands

 

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