The Wessexes’ sad Caribbean Tour might be the last royal tour of its kind

by Susan Ryant

Think about how messed up it is that the British Foreign Office, the royal palaces and the Commonwealth countries have to pool resources to ensure a “royal tour” goes well, only to have the tour be so offensive, the countries want out of the Commonwealth. In addition to that, when the Earl and Countess of Wessex are sent on tour, they’re truly not bringing any attention to the countries they visit. Sophie and Edward are not providing “tourism” for the money spent sending them on tour. They are too boring to be interesting royals and too tone-deaf to be effective soft-diplomats. And what’s worse is that the goal of the Wessexes’ Caribbean Tour was simply “do no harm.” They weren’t expected to actually achieve anything beyond “be neutral.” They couldn’t even do that. So this Wessex Caribbean Adventure is probably the last one of its kind.

Prince Edward’s royal tour of Caribbean will be among the last to take place campaigners predict as their trip has been marked by anti-colonial protests and calls for slavery reparations. The Earl of Wessex and his wife Sophie began a week-long tour of Antigua and Barbuda, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Saint Lucia last Friday in celebration of the Queen’s platinum jubilee.

As the tour has progressed, so too have calls for reparatory justice from campaigners across all three destinations on the itinerary – from open letters demanding reparations to outright monarchial objections on the streets. By the end of the tour, more countries in the Caribbean had indicated a future desire to divorce the British monarchy – namely Antigua Barbuda and Saint Kitts Nevis – just as Jamaica and Belize had, following the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s accursed excursion in recent weeks.

Responding to the Wessexes’ trip, Philip Murphy, author of The Empire’s New Clothes: the Myth of the Commonwealth, said: “It’s now clear that William and Kate’s ill-fated Caribbean tour last month wasn’t an outlier caused by poor planning. This is now likely to be the pattern for royal visits to the region and I expect they’ll peter out; 2022 looks like being a pivotal year.”

On Wednesday, Edward and Sophie were met by a group of protesters before a trip to a cocoa plantation in Saint Lucia where people held banners reading “repatriation with reparations” and “Queen say sorry” while playing drums and chanting. Shortly beforehand, the earl spoke to a road sweeper with a broom standing in front of the small crowd of Black people and joked “I hope you keep this lot in order” while pretending to wave the broom. This remark has been criticised as another “tone-deaf” gaffe.

[From The Independent]

CB and others have asked if the royals have always been this bad at touring, or if it’s the world that’s changed. I think it’s both – the royals have always been horrible at touring and there are always gaffes and racist comments and bad imagery, but before the prevalence of social media, the gaffes didn’t become international stories for the most part. The gaffes were treated as spicy anecdotes for royal biographies rather than “yet another example of royal colonialist oppression.” Now, do I believe that this is the end of this kind of royal-touring? I don’t know. Charles is supposed to go to Canada in a few weeks and I think that will be the end of Jubbly touring. But the royals were itchy to move around during the pandemic. They actually want to go on tour and make asses out of themselves, they’re desperate to be seen! Which makes it even funnier.

Photos courtesy of Instar.

North America Rights Only – Castries, Saint Lucia -20220426- Prince Edward and Sophie Countess of Wessex meet staff of the British High Commission residence in Castries, Saint Lucia as they continues their visit to the Caribbean, to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. -PICTURED: Prince Edward, Sophie Countess of Wessex -PHOTO by: PA Images/INSTARimages.com Disclaimer: This is an editorial, rights-managed image. Please contact INSTAR Images for licensing fee and rights information at sales@instarimages.com or call +1 212 414 0207. This image may not be published in any way that is, or might be deemed to be, defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification needed prior to publication and use. INSTAR Images reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this material. If you are in violation of our intellectual property rights or copyright you may be liable for damages, loss of income, any profits you derive from the unauthorized use of this material and, where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or any statutory damages awarded For images containing underage children: Be advised that some Countries may have restricted privacy laws against publishing images of underage children. Inform yourself! Underage children may need to be removed or have their face pixelated before publishing North America Rights Only – Saint Lucia, Saint Lucia -20220428- Prince Edward and Sophie Countess of Wessex meet staff and students from a number of St Lucian schools, at Camille Henry Memorial school in St Lucia, as they continue their visit to the Caribbean, to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. -PICTURED: Prince Edward, Sophie Countess Of Wessex -PHOTO by: PA Images/INSTARimages.com Disclaimer: This is an editorial, rights-managed image. Please contact INSTAR Images for licensing fee and rights information at sales@instarimages.com or call +1 212 414 0207. This image may not be published in any way that is, or might be deemed to be, defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification needed prior to publication and use. INSTAR Images reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this material. If you are in violation of our intellectual property rights or copyright you may be liable for damages, loss of income, any profits you derive from the unauthorized use of this material and, where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or any statutory damages awarded For images containing underage children: Be advised that some Countries may have restricted privacy laws against publishing images of underage children. Inform yourself! Underage children may need to be removed or have their face pixelated before publishing North America Rights Only – Saint Lucia, Saint Lucia -20220428- Prince Edward and Sophie Countess of Wessex meet staff and students from a number of St Lucian schools, at Camille Henry Memorial school in St Lucia, as they continue their visit to the Caribbean, to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. -PICTURED: Prince Edward, Sophie Countess of Wessex -PHOTO by: PA Images/INSTARimages.com Disclaimer: This is an editorial, rights-managed image. Please contact INSTAR Images for licensing fee and rights information at sales@instarimages.com or call +1 212 414 0207. This image may not be published in any way that is, or might be deemed to be, defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification needed prior to publication and use. INSTAR Images reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this material. If you are in violation of our intellectual property rights or copyright you may be liable for damages, loss of income, any profits you derive from the unauthorized use of this material and, where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or any statutory damages awarded For images containing underage children: Be advised that some Countries may have restricted privacy laws against publishing images of underage children. Inform yourself! Underage children may need to be removed or have their face pixelated before publishing North America Rights Only – Saint Lucia, Saint Lucia -20220428-Prince Edward and Sophie Countess of Wessex meet staff and students from a number of St Lucian schools, at Camille Henry Memorial school in St Lucia, as they continue their visit to the Caribbean, to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.-PICTURED: Prince Edward, Sophie Countess of Wessex -PHOTO by: PA Images/INSTARimages.comDisclaimer:This is an editorial, rights-managed image. Please contact INSTAR Images for licensing fee and rights information at sales@instarimages.com or call +1 212 414 0207. This image may not be published in any way that is, or might be deemed to be, defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification needed prior to publication and use. INSTAR Images reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this material. If you are in violation of our intellectual property rights or copyright you may be liable for damages, loss of income, any profits you derive from the unauthorized use of this material and, where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or any statutory damages awardedFor images containing underage children: Be advised that some Countries may have restricted privacy laws against publishing images of underage children. Inform yourself! Underage children may need to be removed or have their face pixelated before publishing North America Rights Only – Castries, Saint Lucia -20220426- Prince Edward and Sophie Countess of Wessex meet staff of the British High Commission residence in Castries, Saint Lucia as they continues their visit to the Caribbean, to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. -PICTURED: Prince Edward, Sophie Countess of Wessex -PHOTO by: PA Images/INSTARimages.com Disclaimer: This is an editorial, rights-managed image. Please contact INSTAR Images for licensing fee and rights information at sales@instarimages.com or call +1 212 414 0207. This image may not be published in any way that is, or might be deemed to be, defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification needed prior to publication and use. INSTAR Images reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this material. If you are in violation of our intellectual property rights or copyright you may be liable for damages, loss of income, any profits you derive from the unauthorized use of this material and, where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or any statutory damages awarded For images containing underage children: Be advised that some Countries may have restricted privacy laws against publishing images of underage children. Inform yourself! Underage children may need to be removed or have their face pixelated before publishing North America Rights Only – Saint Lucia, Saint Lucia -20220427-Prince Edward and Sophie Countess of Wessex on a boat at Ganters Bay jetty for a ride to Soufriere, Saint Lucia, as they continue their visit to the Caribbean, to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.-PICTURED: Prince Edward, Sophie Countess of Wessex -PHOTO by: PA Images/INSTARimages.comDisclaimer:This is an editorial, rights-managed image. Please contact INSTAR Images for licensing fee and rights information at sales@instarimages.com or call +1 212 414 0207. This image may not be published in any way that is, or might be deemed to be, defamatory, libelous, pornographic, or obscene. Please consult our sales department for any clarification needed prior to publication and use. INSTAR Images reserves the right to pursue unauthorized users of this material. If you are in violation of our intellectual property rights or copyright you may be liable for damages, loss of income, any profits you derive from the unauthorized use of this material and, where appropriate, the cost of collection and/or any statutory damages awardedFor images containing underage children: Be advised that some Countries may have restricted privacy laws against publishing images of underage children. Inform yourself! Underage children may need to be removed or have their face pixelated before publishing