The Viceregal Lion
  1. The Governor General of Canada
  2. Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette
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Arrival of Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

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Rideau Hall, Thursday, June 30, 2011


It is a great pleasure for my wife, Sharon, and me to welcome Your Royal Highnesses to Rideau Hall and to Canada.

We are delighted to see you again, and to have the opportunity to revisit our memories of your magnificent wedding last spring. It was a privilege to represent all Canadians on that memorable day, and it is an honour to greet you today on your first official tour as a married couple.

And so, welcome to Canada, honeymoon capital of the Commonwealth!  

Allow me to speak for a moment about the significance of the tour you are about to embark upon. Over the next eight days, you will cross this wonderful country of ours, visiting our communities and sharing in our lives for a series of brief—but unforgettable—moments. 

Even in an era of instant, global communications, there is no substitute for a smile, a greeting and a moment of shared humanity. Our personal ties are vital; and so, your visit serves as a very important moment for our country.

As you know, the Crown plays a key role in Canada’s constitutional monarchy, ensuring both the continuity and the responsibility of government. As governor general, I am privileged to act on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen, who has devotedly served this country for over fifty-nine years.

The theme of your tour, Moving Forward Together, is a fitting tribute to the significance of our ties to the Crown and we have no doubt that you will fulfill your roles admirably and with enthusiasm.

As governor general, I have had the privilege of travelling across Canada and meeting Canadians in their communities. I am certain that a warm welcome awaits you, as you discover the hospitality of Canadians and the beauty of this great country of ours.

As you begin your journey, I would like to encourage you to engage with Canadians about their dreams for building a smarter, more caring nation as we approach 2017, the 150th anniversary of Confederation. Your ideas and support are key to the Canada we envision.

May you find, as your great grandfather did during his 1939 Royal Tour to Canada, that your visit gives the Canadian people: “a deeper conception of their unity as a nation.”

I would like to take this opportunity to thank so many Canadians and visitors for joining us today at Rideau Hall to welcome you, and on behalf of all of them, I wish you a wonderful stay in Canada.

May it be the first of many.

Thank you.