Royal countdown for Feilding

Last updated 06:42 13/11/2012

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Feilding police are gearing up for one of the largest policing events the town has seen.

Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, will be in Feilding on Thursday as part of their visit to New Zealand for the Queen’s Jubilee.

Palmerston North rural area commander Inspector Mark Harrison said police, in conjunction with other agencies, had been planning for the royal visit for weeks.

Mr Harrison could not divulge exact details but said ‘‘quite a number’’ of police officers would be in Manchester Square during the couple’s visit.

‘‘I think it’s going to be quite a crowd the vibe in the community is people are quite looking forward to it.’’

When the royal couple’s advance party visited a few months ago, they were clear about their interest in meeting Manawatu residents, he said.

The Manawatu Standard has reported the royal pair’s request to speak to children about their entries into the Right Royal Rural Letterboxes  competition.

They will also visit the cenotaph, meet fallen soldiers’ families, and talk to farmers.

This is the second royal visit Mr Harrison has been involved with, having been a part of the Queen’s visit to New Zealand in 1990.

He has first-hand experience seeing the public’s reaction to the royals.

‘‘People really enjoy seeing them and engaging with them, and that’s what they [Charles and Camilla] want.

‘‘Feilding is really upbeat about it, it’s a chance for the town to put itself on display.’’

Security around the royals is strict and those who have been invited to meet them – stallholders, organisers, dignitaries and media – have all had to receive clearance from police before being allowed in the cordon.

Roads will also be closed around Manchester Square from 7am till 3pm.

After their visit to Feilding, Prince Charles will visit a Manawatu farm, and the duchess will travel to Massey University Equine Research and Wildbase centres before the pair reunite at Ohakea to meet air force personnel.

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- Manawatu Standard

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