Tuesday, 16 September 2014

The Earl and Countess of Wessex Visit Canada

The Earl and Countess of Wessex are currently undertaking a five-day tour of Canada at the moment, not that royalists in the UK would know. Coverage has been desperately lacking to say the least, and it very much appears not one British newspaper sent a photographer or reporter to accompany the couple. For our Canadian readers, is the tour gaining much media coverage over there? It really is a pity Edward and Sophie are not covered properly considering the amount of work they do.

Governor's Facebook Page

Crowds welcoming the couple upon arrival.

Governor's Facebook Page

Sophie received a posy of flowers.

Governor's Facebook Page

The tour began with a reception at Government House hosted by the Leiutenant Governor, The Honourable Judith Guichon OBC.

Governor's Facebook Page

Sophie's sense of style has really evolved over the past couple of years. She knows what suits her figure, colouring and she's always considerate of the occasion. The Countess selected a £945 Stretch Wool Emilio Picci Bolero and the very pretty Abstract-Print Cotton Dress by Oscar de la Renta. The $2,790 frock features cap sleeves and a modified boat neck.


For day two of the tour the couple attended a service of dedication at The Cary Castle Mews, a cluster of 19th century wooden service buildings on the south-east side of the Government House estate. The Mews consists of stables, a carriage house, a wash house and a poultry house.

Governor's Facebook Page

Edward and Sophie officially opened the newly expanded costume museum located in the carriage house.

Governor's Facebook Page

Afterwards, a busy day of engagements ensued which saw Sophie spent time at Our Place; an inner city community centre serving Greater Victoria's most vulnerable: working poor, impoverished elderly, mentally and physically challenged, addicted and the homeless.

Our Place Facebook Page

Sophie met staff and people who have benefited from the services provided.

Our Place Facebook Page

The Countess donned an apron to help cook lunch.

Our Place Facebook Page

Once again, Sophie chose a black dress and pretty frock for a varied day of appearances. The zipped blazer is a Sandro piece and the silk geo-print dress is by Peter Pilitto


Day three offered a variety of events beginning with a visit to the Rick Hansen Institute; a Canadian based not-for-profit organisation committed to accelerating the translation of discoveries and best practices into improved treatments for people with spinal cord injuries.

Rick Hansen Foundation Twitter Feed

The vision of the organisation is "a world without paralysis after spinal cord injury".

Rick Hansen Twitter Feed

The organisation is named after and headed by Rick Hansen. Inspired to find a cure for his own injury Rick and his team wheeled more than 40,000 km to raise awareness for the charity.

Christine Tam Twitter Feed
The Countess selected an understated but elegant white wool blend dress by Emilio Pucci for the visit. It's a very classic piece which works from day to night.


Later, it was time to enjoy the great outdoors as the royals visited the Trans Canada  Trail Hike, one of the world's longest networks of trails, developed and promoted by a non-profit registered charity. When completed, the trail will stretch nearly 24,000 kilometres from the Atlantic to the Pacific.

Vancouver Sun

The tour is going very well. Edward and Sophie both come across as very personable and friendly and according to those who met them were very eager to meet as many people as possible. We thank Anna from the HRH Countess of Wessex blog for the fashion ID's listed throughout!

24 comments:

  1. Love the white dress! It does seem really odd that there isn't a single official photographer there.

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  2. Wow,!she is very inspiring and hardworking. Regal and elegant, but down to earth at the same time.

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  3. Great post Charlotte!! I loved the white Emilo Pucci dress, it fits Sophie perfectly and shows her figure to it's fullest advantage. Since the arrival of the Kate, Sophie has really upped her fashion game and has worn some amazing pieces. A similar thing happened to me, we hired a fashionable young woman at my office, she always is so wonderfully dressed casual but very put together, that it got me interested in how to improve my wardrobe and look.

    I so agree with you Charlotte, this couple certainly deserves much more press coverage than they receive. I wonder, from their point of view, how does it feel when the D&D of Cambridge have hordes of photographers and press following them and thousands show up at their engagements but the coverage and crowds are so minimal for Edward and Sophie. Are they frustrated, jealous or does it not bother them much? I think I would be frustrated, not for myself really but for the charities I'm visiting as the lack of coverage means lack of exposure for some really worthy causes. Oh, who am I kidding, I'd be a bit jealous too. :)

    Thanks again for the great post on Edward and Sophie, I look forward to hearing more about their causes and engagements.

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  4. Unbelievable not a single UK journalist followed TRHs', an elegant and hardworking couple, to Canada. The Countess looks lovely as always and Edward is as always up to whatever task is at hand.

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  5. Lovely post, I do wish William will take some fashion advice/direction from his uncle. I feel William looks frumpy in most of his get ups, while the earl looks well dressed and proportional.

    The countess looks beautiful, every pieces fits her perfectly. I can't help but day dream about Catherine at this age. Of course I don't want to skip all the wonderful years to come but I just know Catherine will be similar to Sophie. Elegant, age appropriate and perhaps even more comfortable with the people and engagements. While Catherine comes off very friendly Sophie defiantly has a way with the people around her; you can see she is very comfortable and at ease. Definitely something I am looking forward to with Catherine.

    Great post Charlotte!

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    1. People see things so differently! My first impression was that Essex looked frumpy, almost like he had slept in his suit. The double breasted suit didn't fit well either. William is much better put together IMHO.

      The Countess looked beautiful and so very elegant in the cream Pucci, but the others I felt were to casual.....very Michelle Obama-like.

      Mel

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    2. Mel, I tend to agree with you. While I absolutely love the white dress, the rest of it not so much. The geo-print dress with the boxy navy jacket, in particular, looks rather frumpy in comparison. I think Sophie is generally "safe and bland" and once in a while she takes it up a notch or two. The white dress is definitely two notches. :)

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  6. anon from Leominster16 September 2014 at 17:45

    I think some of the problem with Edward and Sophie being covered has come from a combination of circumstances. They married in 1999 when royal popularity was at a low, and Sophie didn't make a strong impression at first. She looked too much like Diana, with a similar short haircut. And both she and Edward were trying to work privately at first and it turned into a horrid muddle. There was the scandal about Sophie and the false sheik and Edward's Argent company failed - they say investors lost everything.

    By the time they took on royal duties, the public had lost interest in them for the most part, except for die-hard royalists and where public whim goes, the press follows. Today, I think many don't know who they are.

    Things aren't quite the same for William and Kate, they are the heirs and a glamourous couple but it does show the hazards of drifting out of the public eye and the dangers of royals working outside, as well as royal complacency.

    The time for Wiliam and Kate to make their name is now, when they are still young and interesting. They are the future that the British public wants to see in unsettled time, the stability of the monarchy has seen the country though past difficut moments and many look to the solidness of the institution. But it's an aging monarchy at the moment and after the initial excitment of the royal wedding, I do see attention drifting away and that is likely to increase should the couple retire more from royal duties.

    It is a pity that Edward and Sophie don't draw more attention because they work so hard and Sophie does seem to have a wonderful gift with people as these photos demonstrate. She has a very easy way with her.

    Love her white dress and the black and white one, but not so keen on the Pilitto, it is rather bulky and so similar to the black and white that for a moment, I was confused. But I believe she's worn it before. I like her hair long, especially when she wears it loose, it is a softer look for her. I suspect she doesn't get to take a hairdresser with her like Kate, but Sophie does look wonderful when she curls it.

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    1. Leo, when I think of Edward, two things come to mind...that he quit the marines and the hissy fit directed at the photographers at the It's a Royal Knockout event. I didn't respect him for that and I lost interest.

      Sophie joined the royal family after the marriages of Sarah/Andrew and Diana/Charles failed. She learned from their mistakes and was determined to remain below the radar and not do anything to outshine her husband and royal in-laws. In that she has succeeded..........perhaps more than she wanted to.............

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    2. I've only just realised that you cover the Earl and Countess of Wessex as well Charlotte. They deserve much more attention for their very busy work schedule, whilst also bringing up a young family. A wonderful post and I agree with everything anon from Leominster has said about the need for William and Catherine to make their name for hard work now, in the same way. Why do they believe that the British public will retain affection for the Royal Family if they make excuse after excuse, such as the Duchess being on extended maternity leave or needing time for a family life. It is possible to combine that with work, particularly if you have a team of staff to take care of the domestic chores. Sophie and Edward are brilliant examples to follow.

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    3. If E&S are brilliant example to follow, Maddogsslave, you won't object if W&K go completely off the radar as E&S did before they had children and until their children were out of their toddler years. Following your reasoning and that example, W&C can get started in their 40s. No worries.

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  7. I live in Ottawa, Ontario (Canada's capital) and am a very active news reader. I haven't heard one single story on Edward and Sophie's visit, though there is much buzz about whether Kate will make her trip to Malta this weekend!

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  8. The Countess' style is beautiful, and appropriate. The white piece shows her figure so perfectly. I love it ! Hope we see more of her !

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  9. Hi Charlotte, they are not getting that much coverage here but they getting some in the paper and on the news hour on tv. They went to visit the spinal cord unit with Rick Hansen and they are going to Kelowna tomorrow.

    Thanks for sharing this important visit. It's disgusting no reporter came for them from the UK. They really treat Edward as is he is a lesser royal

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  10. I agree that it is shameful that they don't get more coverage. They are very hardworking people, and they have a relaxed, friendly manner with the crowds.

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  11. Thank you Charlotte.
    Real pity that the tour isn't being covered at all .... But on the positive Sophie and Edward are making a very positive impact. I do like them as a couple :-)
    Simone

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  12. I live in Toronto, Canada and there hasn't been much coverage here either (mind you I'm not in Victoria which is on the other side of the country). It is a pity as they do seem personable and hard-working. I also love the white dress she wore.

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  13. The the Earl and Countess are fantastic. I admire way in which they tried to make their own way, before it became obvious that wasn't going to happen. It was a case of "damned if you do, damned if you don't".
    I think to us mere mortals, the idea of being photographed and put in the papers appeals. In reality I imagine it wears off pretty quickly. So I suspect the lack of coverage of the Earl and Countess might only bother them in that they would like their charities to get more coverage. But when it comes to their family life I am sure they are perfectly happy with the lack of interest!
    The focus of the Royal Family in the media really is the Big Three - William Catherine and Harry. I can't imagine that changing EVER.
    Please keep up the posts on Edward and Sophie. I would love to have some of Sophie's dresses!!

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  14. The first time I comment over here and THANKS so much, Charlotte, for this wonderful blog, too!!
    I totally agree with those who say it´s a real shame those two don´t get more coverage. Sophie exudes a lot of natural sympathy and also competence in these photos posted here. She seems to have a natural ease with people - I mean, just look at the "cuddle" photo!
    I LOVE the Emilio Pucci dress - so chic and Sophie looks absolutely terrific in it!

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  15. Why would a UK newspaper put out the expense to send reporters/photographers to another country to cover a visit from Edward and Sophie? The eighth member in line to the throne? How would they pay for the travel and salary of those persons? I would think the host country press might take an interest - since presumably the tax payers are paying for it - but then again, you've got to pay people to cover the story.

    In light of those considerations - these visits are truly about meeting with the people of the country - that one on one personal human experience - and not the virtual experience that media provides. Edward and Sophie can't offer mass exposure to their charities, they can provide a personal touch from the monarchy and possibly connections in financing. Just because the press doesn't cover it - doesn't make it meaningful to the folks who were touched by their visit.

    You might need a 3rd blog, Charlotte, covering the children of the queen. :-)

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  16. Royalfan... I had forgotten about that Royal Knockabout -- so I pulled it up on YouTube to watch it! 1987 - Over 27 years old now! What a fantastic piece of video taped history!

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  17. Moxie, did you have to specify the year? I feel even older now. :))) History indeed.....

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  18. The Countess may have joined the Royal Family after Diana, but she was dating Edward, as I have a picture of Diana in a lovely suit & Sophie in a rather short outfit. Someone must have told Sophie to stop the above-the-knee as was told the Duchess. Sophie got off on a bad start when she was scammed by someone into giving gossip on the Royal Family to a reporter, i.e., the York sisters rely on their Princess titles too much...Sophie has grown & become a value to The Firm.

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