Friday, 15 September 2017

Writing a Letter of Condolence


A letter of condolence is a very sad thing to write. You write to the family, to send them your sympathies after the loss of a loved one.

I won't repeat the basics of writing to a Royal, as it is pretty much the same for all letters. You can find a lot of helpful info on that here. I will just go into the specifics of Letters of Condolences.

Who to write to?

Most of the time this is obvious. Usually, you send a letter of condolence to the closest living family member.

But sometimes it this can be difficult, you're not sure who the closest family member is, or aren't that familiar with the close family, they aren't a part of the immediate royal family, etc.

To figure out who to write to, ask yourself the following questions:
  • How is the media describing the person who has passed away? (Usually, the media, will say which royal they are related to. The headlines will say something like [Royal Name]'s Uncle/Brother/Cousin, [Person], passed away.
  • Who released a statement about the person's passing?
  • Who was mentioned in the obituary?
  • Who attended the funeral?
  • Who do you have an address for?
  • Who is a working Royal?
  • Who responds to letters?
  • etc.
Who you send your letters to, and where you send it, may affect if you get a reply and what you will get.

I usually send my letter of condolence to one person, and write at the beginning "I'm sending my condolences to you and your family".

If you are really stumped on who to send your letter of condolence to, you can always address your letter to "The Family of [person who passed away]."

When to write?

Don't feel like you need to write the minute you hear the news. Give yourself a few days to reflect, see what information is being released by the Palace, family, media, what people are saying, etc.

I think anytime within 2 weeks after the passing or shortly after the funeral is acceptable.

What to say?

Letters of condolences are best-kept brief, anywhere from a few lines to a page.

Things you might include in your letter:
  • Your condolences to the person you are writing to (and their family, friends, etc). 
  • How you felt when you hear the news
  • Your feeling towards that person who has passed away
    • Were they your favorite? Why?
    • What did you admire about them?
  • Share a favorite memory
    • How will you remember the person who has passed?
    • What were their best strengths or characteristics?
  • Let the family know they will be in your thoughts/prayers 
Handwrite vs. Typed?

There is this archaic rule that letters of condolences must be handwritten. This stemming from a time when people learned beautiful penmanship and typewriters were a new invention. If you have nice handwriting, I would strongly encourage you to handwrite your note. It makes it more beautiful and personal.

But if you don't have nice handwriting, and a typed letter is actually going to look nicer and be easier to read, then feel free to type it.

I've sent both handwritten and typed letters of condolence in the past. I usually handwrite the note if it is only a few lines. And will type the note if it's longer.

Back to Writing to the Royals

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Sweden State Opening of Parliament Speech - English Translation (2017)

Embed from Getty Images


Speech given by King Carl Gustaf, 12th September 2017

Mr Speaker,
Honorary members of the Swedish Parliament.

"Public power must be exercised with respect for the equal value of all people and for the freedom and dignity of the individual." [Quoting Sweden's Consitution, 2010 revision]

So it is in the form of government; the basis describing how Sweden should be governed.

Our country has over ten million inhabitants; with varying backgrounds and experiences, and different dreams of the future. About one fifths are children and adolescents under 18 years of age. Almost as many have been born in another country and immigrated here, as children or as adults.

All of these individuals together form Sweden. It is them who you represent in the Riksdag's chamber [Parliment]. You are the foremost representatives of the people

It is a big task with a lot of responsibity. It requires courage and integrity. And it requires a good will to find constructive ways forward.

Mr Speaker, honorable Members of Parliament. Every era has its critical issues.

A hundred years ago, 1917, Europe was at war. Our country escaped the war, yet suffered a severe shortage of food and supplies. The following year, Spanish Flu [1918 influenza pandemic] came to Sweden. Thousands of Swedes, mostly young adults, were killed. Fifty years ago, at the end of the 1960s, the cold war was in full swing.

Today, we face new challenges - new threats to peace, security, welfare, health and the environment.

For example, a lot of us are concerned about the recent escalation of geopolitical tensions. Sweden's seat in the UN Security Council is an important opportunity for our country to contribute to peaceful solutions to world conflicts.

The challenges of our time are significant. There is no doubt about this. But it may be worth recalling that history gives reason for some optimism:

Peace has been exchanged.

Epidemics have been cured.

Prosperity has grown.

Human rights have been strengthened.

And as developments go forward, we are also approaching solutions to several of our crucial issues. Not least in the area of the environment. The question is no longer whether we can achieve a more sustainable development. But how we should go forward. How quickly, with the technology and at what cost. Against this background, there is every reason to view the future with confidence!

I began by quoting from our consitution. A keyword in that quote is "respect". It is also a good starting point for public discussion. Treating each other with respect, even when we think differently.

With these words I wish you all - elected representative of the Swedish people - power, courage and wisdom. This is because you will bring our nation forward to a development that is beneficial to everyone in Sweden.

Yes, to help everyone realize their various dreams.

I declare the 2017/2018 session of Parliament open.

Back to State Opening of Parliment - Main Page

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Prince William - Official Engagements (2018)

Embed from Getty Images
Prince William's current count is 41 engagements for 2018.  
(21+ Royal Tour of Sweden & Norway(20))

(Unconfirmed) - Not officially Confirmed/ Announced, yet, but expected
(Possible) -  Not Confirmed or 100% Expected, but Possible due to past appearances or reports of their attendance.

February
Jan 30th - 2nd
Monday 5th
  • Attend the UK Chamber of Shipping's Annual Dinner at the Park Lane Hilton
Thursday 8th 
  • Visit Burlington Academy to attend School Assembly for Children’s Mental Health Week  and Safer Internet Day
  • Attend the Centrepoint Awards at Kensington Palace
Friday 9th 
  • Attended the United Kingdom Search and Rescue Conference at the National Exhibition Centre
Sunday 18th 
  • Attend BAFTA Awards at the Royal Albert Hall
    • With Kate
Monday 19th 
  • Received Miss Jennifer Price (Chief Executive, Sport England)
Tuesday 20th 
  • Visit MIRA Technology Park in Warwickshire
  • Visit Triumph Motorcyles Ltd
Wednesday 21st 
  • Visit The Fire Station, one of Sunderland’s most iconic buildings, recently converted into a music and arts hub
    • with Kate
  • Northern Spire, an ambitious and striking new bridge over the River Wear, due to open in spring 2018
    • with Kate
Upcoming Engagements

Wednesday 28th

  • Take part in the first annual Royal Foundation Forum showcasing the programmes run or initiated by The Royal Foundation
    • with Kate, Harry & Meghan 
March
    Saturday 17th - (Unconfirmed)
    • Attend Irish Guard's St. Patricks Day Parade
    (Paternity Leave)

    April
    16th - 20th - (Unconfirmed)
    • Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting
    (Paternity Leave)

    May
    (19th - Harry & Meghan's Wedding at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle!!!!!)

    Monday 22nd - (Possible)
    • Attend RHS Chelsea Flower Show
      • With Royal Family
    Date Not Yet Announced
    • Royal Foundation Cyber Bullying Taskforce Meeting to check on 6-month progress of the Action Plan
    (Paternity Leave)

    June
    Friday 8th  - (Unconfirmed)
    • Attend the Senior Colonels’ Conference and Dinner at Buckingham Palace.
    Saturday 9th
    • Attend Trooping the Colours - Queen's Official Birthday 
      • 1st. Battalion Coldstream Guards will be trooping
    Monday 18th - (Unconfirmed)
    • Attend Order of Garter Service 
    12th - 28th - (Days he will attend not confirmed) 
    • Attend 2018 International Business Festival 
      19th-23rd - (Possible)
      • Attend Royal Ascot 
      ????
      (Wednesday 21st: 36th Birthday)
      (Paternity Leave)

      July
      2nd -15th - (Unconfirmed)
      • Attend the Championships, Wimbledon at All England Club
      ?? - (Unconfirmed)
      • Attend Order of Thistle Service
      August

      September

      October
      (12th: Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank Wedding)
      ??
      • Tusk Trust Conservation Award (Unconfirmed) 
      November

      Saturday  10th - (Unconfirmed) 
      • Festival of Remembrance 
      Sunday  11th - (Unconfirmed) 
      • Remembrance Sunday at Cenotaph in Whitehall, London.
      Date Not Yet Announced
      • Royal Foundation Cyber Bullying Taskforce Meeting to check on 1 year progress of the Action Plan
      December
      Dates Not Yet Announced 
      • Royal Variety Performance  (Possible) 
      • Attend Diplomatic Reception at Buckingham Palace (Unconfirmed) 
      • Annual Christmas Carol Service for Henry Van Straubenzee Memorial Fund (Unconfirmed) 

      ** Past Months **
      January (11)
      Tuesday 9th 
      • Received Colonel Tim Purdon upon relinquishing his appointment as Regimental Adjutan of the Irish Guards and Major Niall Hall upon assuming the appointment.
      Wednesday 10th
      • Visit the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust's facilities in Chelsea to view two pioneering robotic surgeries
      • Meet with the CALM zone staff, volunteers and supporters to support their new campaign the 'Best Man Project'
      Tuesday 16th 
      • Visit Coventry Cathedral
        • Tour Ruins
        • With Kate
      • Visit Coventry University 
        • Open the new Science and Health Building
        • With Kate
      • Visit the Positive Youth Foundation
        • With Kate
      Wednesday 17th 
      • Received an Honorary Fellowship at the Royal Society of Medicine
      Thursday 18th 
      • Vsiting Evelina London children's hospital to celebrate the national rollout of Step into Health, a programme for help veterans find work in the NHS
      • Attend a reception hosted by NHS Employers at Chandos House
      • Attended a Giants Club Dinner at Bridgewater House in London
      Tuesday 23rd 
      30th - Feb 2nd

              Duchess Kate - Official Engagements (2018)

              Embed from Getty Images

              Kate's current count of engagements for 2018:  34
              (14 + Royal Tour of Sweden & Norway (20))

              (Unconfirmed) - Not Officially Confirmed/ Announced, Yet, but Expected
              (Possible) -  Not Confirmed or 100% Expected, but Possible due to past appearances or reports of their attendance
                February
                Jan 30th - 2nd
                Wednesday 7th 
                • Open a new Action Addiction community-based treatment centre in Essex
                Sunday 18th 
                • Attend BAFTA Awards at the Royal Albert Hall
                  • With William
                Monday 19th 
                • Attend a Commonwealth Fashion Reception at Buckingham Palace
                  • With Countess Sophie
                Wednesday 21st 
                • Visit The Fire Station, one of Sunderland’s most iconic buildings, recently converted into a music and arts hub
                  • with William 
                • Northern Spire, an ambitious and striking new bridge over the River Wear, due to open in spring 2018
                  • with William 
                Upcoming Engagements:
                Tuesday 27th 
                • Visit St Thomas' Hospital to officially launch Nursing Now 2020, a campaign to raise the profile and status of nursing worldwide
                • Visit Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists to learn more about the College's global health programmes.
                Wednesday 28th 
                • Visit the exhibition 'Victorian Giants: The Birth of Art Photography' at the National Portrait Gallery
                • Take part in the first annual Royal Foundation Forum showcasing the programmes run or initiated by The Royal Foundation
                  • with William, Harry & Meghan
                March
                    Monday 12th - (Possible)
                    • Attend Commonwealth Day Service 
                    Saturday 17th - (Possible)
                    • Attend Irish Guard's St. Patricks Day Parade
                    (Maternity Leave)
                      April
                      (Maternity Leave)
                        May
                        (19th - Prince Harry & Meghan Markle's Wedding at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle)

                        Monday 22nd - (Possible)
                        • Attend RHS Chelsea Flower Show
                          • With Royal Family
                        (Maternity Leave)
                         June
                        ???  - (Possible)
                        • Attend Queen's Garden Party at Buckingham Palace
                          Saturday 9th
                          • Attend Trooping the Colours - Queen's Official Birthday 
                            • 1st. Battalion Coldstream Guards will be trooping
                            19th - 23rd - (Possible)
                            (Maternity Leave)
                              July
                              2nd - 15th (Unconfirmed) 
                              (Maternity Leave)
                                August
                                  September


                                  October
                                  (12th: Princess Eugenie & Jack Brooksbank Wedding)
                                  Fall: 

                                  November
                                  Saturday 10th (Unconfirmed) 
                                  • Attend Festival of Remembrance at Royal Albert Hall 
                                  Sunday 11th (Unconfirmed) 
                                  • Attend Remembrance Sunday at Cenotaph in Whitehall, London
                                  December
                                  Date Not Yet Announced
                                  • Attend Diplomatic Reception at Buckingham Palace (Unconfirmed) 
                                  ** Past Months **
                                  January (9 + Tour)
                                  (9th: Kate's 36th birthday)
                                  Wednesday 10th
                                  • Visit the Reach Academy Feltham, a school working in partnership with Kate's patronage Place2Be
                                  Thursday 11th 
                                  Tuesday 16th 
                                  • Visit Coventry Cathedral
                                    • Tour Ruins
                                    • With William
                                  • Visit Coventry University 
                                    • Open the new Science and Health Building
                                    • With William
                                  • Visit the Positive Youth Foundation
                                    • With William
                                  Wednesday 17th 
                                  • Visit Great Ormond Street Hospital to officially open the Mittal Children's Medical Centre, home to the new Premier Inn Clinical Building
                                  • Visit Bond Primary School in Mitcham to see the work of the Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative. (Wimbledon, AELTC)
                                  Tuesday 23rd
                                  •  Visit Roe Green Junior School and launch a new mental health project for young children
                                    • Give speech.
                                  Wednesday 24th 
                                  • Visit The Maurice Wohl Clinical Neuroscience Institute, at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN), and the Perinatal Service at Bethlem Royal Hospital to learn about their work with Maternal Mental Health
                                    30th - Feb 2nd

                                    Prince Harry - Official Engagements (2018)

                                    Embed from Getty Images
                                    Prince Harry's current count is 20 engagements for 2018. 

                                    (Unconfirmed) - Not Officially Confirmed/ Announced, Yet, but Expected
                                    (Possible) -  Not Confirmed or 100% Expected, but Possible due to past appearances or reports of their attendance

                                    February
                                    Thursday 1st 
                                    • Attend the annual Endeavour Fund Awards
                                      • With Meghan
                                    Thursday 8th
                                    • Visited Transition Intervention and Liaison Service at the Lakes Mental Health Hospital in Colchester
                                    Saturday 10th 
                                    • Attend the Women's Six Nations England vs. Wales at The Stoop & Men's 6 Nations England vs. Wales match at Twickenham Stadium (England Rugby Union)
                                    Tuesday 13th
                                    • Visit Edinburgh Castle
                                      • With Meghan
                                    • Visit  Social Bite, a social business and cafĂ©
                                      • With Meghan
                                    • Attend a reception at the Palace of Holyroodhouse to celebrate youth achievements, marking Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018
                                      • With Meghan
                                    Wednesday 14th 
                                    • Attended a Meeting of The Prince of Wales’ International Sustainability Unit, at Fishmongers’ Hall in London
                                      • With Charles
                                    Thursday 15
                                    • Visit a Fit and Fed February half-term holiday activity programme at Roundwood Youth Centre in Brent. 
                                    Friday 16th 
                                    • Attend the England Rugby Team Open Training Session at Twickenham Stadium
                                    Monday 19th 
                                    • Attended a Trustees’ Meeting at the Honourable Artillery Company for Invictus Games Foundation
                                    Upcoming Engagements:
                                    Wednesday 28th
                                    • Take part in the first annual Royal Foundation Forum showcasing the programmes run or initiated by The Royal Foundation
                                      • with William, Kate & Meghan 
                                    March
                                    Monday 12th - (Possible)
                                    • Attend Commonwealth Day Observance service at Westminster Abbey 
                                      • With Queen and Royal Family
                                    April
                                    16-20th - (Unconfirmed)

                                    • Commonwealth Forums & CHOGM
                                    Sunday 22nd  - (Unconfirmed)
                                    May
                                    ?? - (Possible)
                                    (19th - Wedding at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle!!!!!)

                                    June
                                    Saturday 9th 
                                    • Trooping the Colours - Queen's Official Birthday 
                                      • The 1st. Battalion Irish Guards will be trooping
                                    19th-23rd - (Possible)
                                    • Attend Royal Ascot
                                    ?? - (Unconfirmed)
                                    • Attend Queen's Garden Party at Buckingham Palace
                                    July
                                    ?? - (Possible)
                                    August

                                      September
                                      (15th: Prince Harry's 34th Birthday)

                                      October
                                      (Unconfirmed) 
                                      20-27th 

                                      November
                                      Thursday 8th  (Possible)  
                                      • Field of Remembrance
                                      Sunday 11th (Unconfirmed)  
                                      • Remembrance Sunday at Cenotaph in Whitehall, London 

                                      December
                                      ???  - (Unconfirmed) 
                                      ** Past Months **
                                      January (10)
                                      Tuesday 9th 
                                      • Visit Reprezent 107.3FM in Brixton, to see their work supporting young people through creative training in radio and broadcasting
                                        • With Meghan
                                      Monday 15th
                                      • Received Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt (Assistant Commissioner for Territorial Policing at the Metropolitan Police Service).
                                      Wednesday 17th
                                      • Received Mr Dean Stott (Endeavour Fund recipient) ahead of his solo cycle Pan American Highway Challenge in aid of Heads Together
                                      • Joined the Endeavour Fund Awards Ceremony Judging Panel at Kensington Palace
                                        • With Meghan
                                      Thursday 18th  - Cardiff, Wales
                                      • Visit Cardiff Castle for Welsh Culture festival
                                        • With Meghan
                                      • Visit Star Hub, a community and leisure centre in the Tremorfa to see how sport is being used to engage young people and aid social development. 
                                        • Hear about the work of  StreetGames which helping to make sport accessible to all young people, regardless of their social circumstances
                                        • With Meghan
                                      Monday 22nd - Botswana
                                      • Visit Chobe Game Lodge and received by Tshekedi Khama, Botswana's Minister of Environment, Natural Resources, Conservation and Tourism (Rhino Conservation Botswana)
                                      (Week of 22nd: Private Work Trip to Botswana)

                                      Thursday 25th  - Botswana & South Africa
                                      • Visit the headquarters of Rhino Conservation Botswana in Maun, Botswana
                                      • Visit the headquarters of African Parks in Johannesburg, South Africa
                                      Wednesday 31st 
                                      • Received Mr Peter Fearnhead, Chief Executive of African Parks

                                      Monday, 4 September 2017

                                      The Cambridges (Possible) Birth Plan

                                      **A lot of this is based on Kate's Previous Pregnancies and has not yet been confirmed for Royal Baby 3** 

                                      Due Date: Mid/Late April???? 

                                      Sex: ??? (The couple likes to wait to find out)

                                      Name: The baby will be called "His or Her Royal Highness Prince/ss (name) of Cambridge." The Baby's name will be announced a few days after birth. Per tradition, they will likely not have a name picked out when the baby is born. But they will have a short list. 

                                      Hospital: St. Mary's Hospital, Lindo Wing in Paddington, London

                                      The Cambridges will be staying in London ahead of the birth. But will have contingency plans if Kate happens to be at Anmer Hall or elsewhere when she goes into labour. 

                                      William will be present at the birth.

                                      Announcement: These announcements will be made via Press Release and then over Social Media. The Queen will be the first to be told of the birth, followed by members of the Royal and Cambridge extended family. There will be 2 announcements:

                                      1.  Kate has gone into labour and has been admitted into the hospital
                                      2. Kate has given birth, with babies time of birth, sex, and weight

                                      These announcements will be made via Press Release and then over Social Media. The Queen will be the first to be told of the birth, followed by members of the Royal and Cambridge extended family.

                                      If the Baby is born after 1o PM (London Time), the announcement will be delayed until the next morning at 8 AM. 


                                      A formal announcement of the Birth will be displayed on an easel outside Buckingham Palace. 

                                      Prince George & Princess Charlotte: The Children may visit their little brother or sister at the hospital. This will depend on when the baby is born, how long they will stay in the hospital and how the kids and parents are feeling. 

                                      Returning Home: The family will return to Kensington Palace for a few days, before returning to Anmer Hall. 

                                      Back to Royal Baby 3 - Main Page