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Canadians Give Royal Couple Warm Welcome

Canadians Give Royal Couple Warm Welcome

8:05pm 30th June 2011
(Updated 12:03am 1st July 2011)

The Duke and Duchess Of Cambridge have been meeting thrilled well-wishers at the start of their 12-day tour of Canada and the United States.

It is the first official overseas trip for the royal couple, who married two months ago.

Prince William and Kate travelled to Ottawa on board a Royal Canadian Air Force jet which had the Duke's new royal flag flying from a cockpit window.

They then undertook their opening engagement at the National War Memorial in the city.

The crowds in Confederation Square had swelled to around 3,000 by the time the couple arrived.

The Duke laid a wreath in memory of Canadian servicemen and women who have died in battle, and Kate placed a bouquet of flowers.

The pair then carried out a meet-and-greet session with the public.

Later, Canada's future king and queen went to Rideau Hall, the home of the Queen's representative, the Governor General, for the official welcome.

There William addressed the crowds in English and French.

He said: "Catherine and I are so delighted to be in Canada. We have been looking forward to this moment for a long time.

"Before we were married, we had a longing to come here together."

After speaking French, the second-in-line to the throne joked with crowds, saying: "It will improve as we go along," and got a laugh from his audience.

The Duchess was in a new dress, the first of many outfits she will wear in north America. It was by Erdem Moralioglu, a Canadian designer born in Montreal.

The outfit was a navy, lace Cecile shift scoop-backed dress of contrast stone crepe with a navy lace overlay. It has a sheer lace sleeve with a scallop detail.

An unprecedented 1,400 journalists have been accredited for the Canadian leg of the tour.

The royal couple will travel to seven cities - including Calgary, Montreal and Quebec - during their visit which is set to last nine days.

In Quebec, the monarchy is less popular.

Around 300 protesters from the Quebec Resistance Network, a hard line separatist group, plan to make the Duke and Duchess' welcome to the province as uncomfortable as possible.

The same demonstrators clashed with riot police in 2009 during a visit by the Prince of Wales.

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