Danish Royal Watchers

Monday 29 January 2007

Mary visits Children's Aid Foundation home

Today Crown Princess Mary has visited the Glostrup Observation and Treatment Home as patron of the Children's Aid Foundation, which has worked for improvement in the conditions for children since 1904. The director of the Children's Aid Foundation has said the Glostrup Home will give Mary an insight into their work, as there are staff members with 25-30 years experience working there. The institution is a home for small (0-10) children who have been taken from their parents for reasons of severe neglect or abuse (alcoholics, criminals, drug addicts, incestuous relations and socially malfunctioning parents). These children have great need for special care from social workers and other carers and professionals and often present as very difficult cases. The children were excited to have received some new computers at the Glostrup Home to co-incide with Mary's visit.

From the The Children's Aid website:

Children's Homes (in Danish)
Mary besøger børnehjem DR.dk Mary visits children's home
Added: Mary besøgte børnehjem 'Mary visits children's home' (in Danish) from B.T.
TV2/Local Eyes photo gallery of Mary arriving
DR.dk video clip (1:40)
TV Sputnik video clip (0:40) (just the arrival)

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Friday 26 January 2007

Mary accepts donation for Children's Aid Foundation

Today Crown Princess Mary has accepted a donation to the the Children's Aid Foundation at the Museum of Copenhagen. The newapaper B.T. has raised 1 krone from sales of each paper sold from 1 - 24 December 2006. Mary is the patron of the Children's Aid Foundation and has accepted 1,169,468 Dkk on behalf of the Foundation.

From the The Children's Aid website:

Crown Princess Mary's speech (in Danish)

B.T. article in Danish 'Mary - nu med 60'er-frisure' commenting on Mary's new 1960s hairdo.

B.T. Web-TV/video clip (2:20)

The Children's Aid Foundation asked ABZebra to do a book for Christian's christening gift, the version Frederik and Mary received for Christian was handbound with the original drawings. ABZebra is a great source of Danish/English story books and modern fairytales for children and can be ordered from their ABZebra online shop.

Added: DR.dk news video clip (0:20)

Jyllands Posten
(article in Danish plus photos) 'Kronprinsesse Mary - nu med 60'er-hår' again about the event and Mary's 60's inspired hairdo.

TV2 photo gallery

TV2 Sputnik video clip

From The Children's Aid website:

One million to the Crown Princess

As patron for Children's Aid Foundation H.R.H. The Crown Princess Mary recieved 1,169,468 kr, the biggest single donation to the foundation of all time.
The Children's Aid Foundation and B.T. co-operated in a unique way last December in a fund-raising campaign which began on December 1 and went to December 24, 2006. In this period B.T. donated 1 Dkkr. for every copy of the newspaper sold and readers could also donate extra by using mobile text messages and via ordinary telephone calls. The amount collected ended at 1,169,468 kr. which was handed over the the Crown Princess at a festive occasion at Copenahgen City Museum. Invited guest for the occasion included 22 kids who are living at children's homes and with foster families.
It is the first time in Denmark that an aid organisation and a newspaper has co-operated in this way to collect money for children in care out of their homes...
..."The money will help to give children living in institutions and with foster families many postive and exciting experiences. What is perhaps more important is that this kind of campaign helps to focus the media's attention on the situation of children living away from their families. We have had many contacts from people all over Denmark, and it is our clear impression that the Danes want to help, so that these kids will have brighter future, ” says the director of the Children's Aid Foundation.

The newspaper B.T. which donated the money, says they will focus on the children in institutions and foster homes in articles during 2007, and will arrange for events for these children to enliven their daily life. (thanks santa!)

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Wednesday 24 January 2007

Mary update

B.T. has reported that Mary is taking it easier during this pregnancy than she did when she was pregnant with Christian. At one point during Mary's first pregnancy she experienced premonitory pains (mild uterine contractions before the beginning of true labour) and had to be hospitalised briefly at Rigshospitalet (University Hospital) in Copenhagen. There are no reports of alarm about Mary, just this article postulating why there is a reduced number of appearances by Mary in recent times. Also, Mary has Christian to care for now, which was not a factor last time, and is no doubt preparing him for the arrival of a new sister or brother.

During this pregnancy Mary has been more careful of her health. Mary's royal calendar has far fewer events than during her last pregnancy, so it seems she may be taking precautions to ensure good health for her baby and herself, says B.T.

A month before she was to give birth Mary was taken to Rigshospitalet by ambulance and doctors ordered her to clear her calendar in the few weeks before Christian was born. At the time experts commented that Mary had probably placed too much pressure upon herself by doing too much. Last time round Mary was out doing royal duties in stilettos quite late into her pregnancy, says B.T., quoting Vibeke Manniche. So rather than making too many appearances this time round, Mary is taking care at home at The Chancellory House in Fredensborg. While Mary is active and healthy in her approach to pregnancy, it is possible there are a few problems which we can't know about which she needs to manage for the wellbeing and best outcome for her new baby and herself.

Meanwhile, in another report, in Se og Hør this time, it is claimed Mary is worth 66 billion DKK to Denmark. An image researcher and analyst used by the government says if Mary was a product in Netto (supermarket chain) her value would be greater than the combined export value of Danish dairy products, which was worth 13 billion DKK in 2005.

Simon Anholt says Mary generates money every time she appears: for designers, for the organisations she represents and appears for and not least of all, for the media which covers her every move. Denmark and its economy benefits from the tourism created by the monarchy in general and Mary in particular. Mary is helping to make Denmark well-known around the world, says Anholt, and effectively she is a walking cash register.

Another item concerning Mary is a HELLO! magazine online vote which declared her the most elegant for 2006. Various Danish media reported the story of the vote (including TV2), which was exceptional for having Britney Spears in the 'most elegant' lineup.

On a final note, we do have some official calendar events for Mary and Frederik coming up in the next few weeks which we can look forward to.


Friday 19 January 2007

Joachim & Marie: do they have a secret?

Billed Bladet's Ulrik Ulriksen has written a cover story again this week (in the issue #3, 18 January 2007) about the relationship between Prince Joachim and Marie Cavallier. Here follows a translation of the article, kindly done by Muhler. Billed Bladet can have a somewhat sugary style, but they are usually barking up the right tree with their actual reporting. It was Billed Bladet's Anna Johannesen who had the scoop on Mary and got the first photo of her in Sydney. Johannesen has been in Florida covering Frederik and the Farr 40 competition this last week. As to whether there is a 'secret' between Joachim and Marie -- who knows? Only time will tell how their relationship develops -- a cliché but true! -- however, there can be no doubt that the New Year party and Marie's meeting with Nikolai, Felix, Alexandra, Martin and Joachim's close friends has some significance as to his hopes at least.

I cannot unveil it

You can see it as well as hear it: Joachim is carrying a secret.

While the prince doesn’t directly deny anything, he also does not wish to reveal anything for the moment. Last Friday when Billed Bladet asked the in love Joachim about the past year as well as the year to come in relation to Marie Cavalier, the answer was fairly cryptic.
“It has been a challenging year we have been through. And expectations for 2007 are pretty much the same. With regard to our relationship this year will be both challenging and exciting. But, I cannot reaveal anything in what way,” answered Joachim, short and precise, and then with a teasing smile dodged further questions, rushed out of the door, and hurried towards his car. However, he seemed content.
Prince Joachim was in a great mood when Billed Bladet met him in connection with the 100th anniversary of Tønder Handelsskole (school of commerce) for a brief but very important remark. Just before the prince got into his four-wheel-drive for the five minute trip from the Tønder school of commerce home to Schackenborg, he kindly stopped to accept the inevitable question about himself and Marie.
With slightly raised eye brows and a sparkle in his eye, he recapped on 2006 with Marie Cavallier. The most interesting thing was that he looked ahead, and more than hinted that 2007 will be something special for him and Marie and that they very obviously have a secret together.
There are several engagements on the horizon this year within the royal house but it doesn't mean love can't flourish between Prince Joachim and his French sweetheart. They have been a couple for almost two years by now, minus a short break last year for them to reflect on things separately. The result of the pause to reflect and the past couple of months is that it is now serious with Joachim and Marie. In recent times there have been several romantic rendezvous in Denmark. The fact that Prince Joachim presented Marie to his closest family and friends at the New Year party at Amalienborg says a lot. But also the fact that he and Marie see each other more frequently now indicates that they are both serious.
It is believed the couple is now very close to be together out in the open, which in effect reveals to the whole world what their their feelings for each other are. Although it is not certain that Joachim will stand in front of the altar with his Marie this year, being open about the relationship will do for the time being.
There is still time to plan and announce an engagement. But the couple can use the time before then to appear together at a large party among friends, for example, or at some kind of semi-official event. It remains for the couple to agree on when and where they go public.
When Billed Bladet recently met Marie Cavallier in Geneva, it was a slightly different experience with her than in previous encounters. Something good had happened in her life, perhaps in connection with the New Year stay at Amalienborg Palace, where Joachim was a perfect host for his girlfriend. Had something momentous fallen in place for her? She certainly seemed at ease, but wisely she avoided answering every question which might shed some light on the secret.
On the question as to whether an engagement is on the way, Marie only responded with a subtle silence. And yet Marie Cavallier did briefly reply, “Right now, there is nothing new.”
But “right now” there is no doubt that both Joachim and Marie are very happy. However, they must be viewing their situation from a more critical and serious angle by now. They are both subjected to a certain pressure. Especially Joachim, who has spent the past eighteen months on one of the most important projects of his life – to figure out whether Marie is the right woman to have in his life. Joachim has been burned once before, and his divorce was tough to get through. This time it must not fail. A second marriage must last.
Perhaps it is the prospect of an engagement which is the reason why Prince Joachim so enthusiastically gets to work on the hard chores of the winter at Schackenborg Manor in Møgeltønder, the place where he now must decide for the second time whether to raise a family. Prince Joachim emphasises there is no slacking in the work at the manor and on the estate just because winter rattles the Southern Jutlandic landscape, which at the moment appears barren and cold. A farmer is never completely off duty, not even when he is a prince.
“No matter how long the winter lasts it always seems too short when spring comes. The tasks we have put in place to do in winter is everything from maintenance of machinery to buildings. Right now we are repairing and maintaining houses on the estate. With the winter weather we have now, this is necessary,” says Joachim, who can look back on a challenging 2006 both emotionally and also from a professional point of view.
“Much has been written about how bad the harvest of 2006 has been. In that respect we have been rather lucky compared to other parts of the country. We are actually going through a period of restructuring in which quite a few projects have been initiated in 2006. The plan is that it will be a rationalisation, increasing the efficiency and expansion of the estate.
In 2007 we will continue the hard work to reach our objectives for Schackenborg. But we can be as professional as possible and still not succeed: we have to factor in the weather, which the rest of the Danish business world does not have to do. So we don't count our chickens before they are hatched, says Prince Joachim, who is a cautious and thorough man. In all aspects of life.
Written by Ulrik Ulriksen, translated by Muhler.

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Thursday 18 January 2007

Frederik in Florida

As we know, Crown Prince Frederik has been in Acura West in Florida this week sailing the Farr 40 boat »Nanoq«. Billed Bladet reports that tomorrow he finds out the result of the week's sailing. Each day he has cycled down to the harbour from where he is staying in an apartment, along with the eight other crew members, some of whom have their wives and children with them. However, Frederik is by himself. Last autumn when he was sailing in Newport, Mary and Christian visited him, but this time they have been at home in Denmark and out walking in some stormy winter weather, among other things (see our earlier post).

16 January. Crown Prince Frederik steers the Farr 40 class sailboat "Nanoq" during the second day of racing at the Acura Key West 2007 Sailing Regatta in Key West, Florida. "Nanoq" is in 15th place of 17 Farr 40 boats competing in the regatta that is to continue through 19 January 2007 off the Florida Keys. Florida Keys News Bureau/Ken Stanek

17 January. Crown Prince Frederik chats with competing sailors including James Richardson (L) following the third day of racing at the Acura Key West 2007 sailing regatta in Key West, Florida. The prince is skippering a Farr 40 - class boat "Nanoq" and is in 13th place of 17 boats in the class. EPA/ANDY NEWMAN (NB: Jim Richardson is a bit of a sailing legend!)

Acura West 2007 race videos
Acura West 2007 there are 17 classes racing in 4 divisions and 20 countries represented. Farr 40 boats are in Division 1 if you want to follow the results on this link.

Some info about Farr 40 racing:
Farr 40 are not maxi yachts -- they are 40 footers, all of a standard design which make them unique as a newly developed racing class. Many other yachting events (such as the Sydney to Hobart Boxing Day Race) have a mixture of classes/boat size. Such races are handicapped, but the beauty of single class racing is this isn't necessary because all participants are on an equal footing, with the same specifications for their boats, same crew numbers and all following the same rules of competition. This year is the tenth anniversary of Farr 40 world championships and the competition will be in Copenhagen (Øresund) along with a very strong Nordic sailing competition lead-up program in Norway, Sweden and Germany.

Farr 40 boats are made of carbon fibre so they are pretty light for their size, they also have a uniform design. Before each competition all the boats are weighed and measured and have the 12 sails checked. The weigh-in includes the crew which can be 8 or 9, depending on the weight of the individual crew members. The total weight of the crew cannot exceed 760 kilos.

Crown Prince to helm prestige yacht from The Copenhagen Post. This old report from 2004 gives the details of the "Nanoq" Farr 40 project and how the team is financed and structured. Harboe director Bernhard Griese provides the financial backing (that is, Frederik does not own it). The national coach of Danish sailing has said the Farr 40 project is important for lifting the profile of sailing in Denmark, and Crown Prince Frederik's participation enhances the development of the sport.

In October 2006 Frederik gave an interview to Politiken's Lars Jørgensen in which he talked about the virtues of sailing as a sport, it's teamwork and the experience of pitting yourself against the elements and other competitors. As a strong maritime nation, sailing is important to Denmark and Politiken acknowledged Frederik's hand in winning the Farr 40 world championships for Denmark, to be held later this year. Frederik cites his grandfather Frederik IX, the sailor king, as an inspiration as well as his father Henrik (Dragon class) and his uncle Konstantine (an Olympic sailor). He talked about the name "Nanoq", which is the Greenlandic name for polar bear.
And, as we know from Frederik's activities for several years he has been active in the International Sailing Federation.
Added from Spanish Hola!: Tormenta para la princesa Mary, sol para el príncipe Federico (Storm for Princess Mary, sun for Prince Frederik)
New! Final results "Nanoq" 13th out of field of 17 with total score after nine races of 93 (winner had 51 last had 128). "Nanoq's" best result - 7th in race 7 and worst was 14th in race 8.

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Danish royal roundup # 13

Queen Margrethe sat through the New Year court for ambassadors. It appears the Queen will be having a second knee replacement operation this year. Among ambassadors she greeted was the (relatively) new Australian ambassador to Denmark Sharyn Minahan, who was greeted warmly by the Queen and who spoke a little longer than most with Mary. Sharyn Minahan, below.

Queen in pain
It has only been seven months since Queen Margrethe underwent surgery on her left knee and had an artificial knee-joint inserted. Now her health is poor again and it was obvious that the Queen was suffering from severe pain, when she attended the Little New Year's Court at Christiansborg Slot two weeks ago. Usually Her Majesty stands and personally greets all the diplomats and their spouses, but the Queen had hardly entered Riddersalen (The Great Hall) with Prince Henrik and the Crown Prince Couple, before she asked a waiter to bring a chair. It was ready in an adjacent chamber and Queen Margrethe carried through the rest of the court sitting down.
The Queen could have chosen to cancel the court, but she wouldn’t have any of that. The New Year Court where the diplomats working in Denmark greet the Queen and wish a happy New Year is so important that as far as possible, it must be carried through. Only in 2002 when the Queen had broken some ribs and could neither stand nor sit, did Prince Henrik stand in for his wife and attend the court together with Crown Prince Frederik.
It is however not a good sign that the Queen can no longer go through an official event without having to sit down. Even though in her New Year address a few days before talked about her “generally speaking excellent health”, is it clearly something of an exaggeration. Shortly before the Queen had a new left knee on the June 1st last year she was asked, “On which knee are you to have surgery?” And the response was “I think we’ll take the left knee this time”. Whether the Queen already then knew that the other knee had to be operated on is not known. But there are strong indications that an operation will soon be necessary.
It is arthritis which has tormented the Queen for years and she has had pains in her right and left knees and has undergone surgery to both of them, the first time 15 years ago in 1992. But also her back has caused problems, and in 2003 Queen Margrethe was operated on for arthritis since she was suffering from a so-called spinal stenosis, a constriction of the spinal cord. The pattern of illness is always the same. The Queen is in pain, but tries to fight it, perhaps with medication. The illness gets worse and instead of cancelling her many official duties, the Queen has to sit down to go through them, just like now. Finally surgery is the end result.
The Queen definitely does not like to be ill, and she will hold out for as long as possible before she accepts having to undergo an operation. But it may nevertheless be necessary because of the pain the Queen now suffers. She can get all the help she needs but no one can cure her of the arthritis. And the inconveniences can be alleviated no longer. It helps to be fit and not too heavy, and the Queen is in accordance with both. She has for many years danced ballet at a private class with good friends, she has been skiing and handled the toughest slopes for many years, and she has lately become so slim, almost thin, that her weight certainly can’t put a strain on either knees nor back.
Everyone hopes that an operation can be avoided. But should it become necessary, then Queen Margrethe knows that the entire family is ready to help her and take on all her official duties, until her hopefully speedy recovery.
By Annelise Weimann of Billed Bladet and kindly translated by Muhler.

15 December 2006. Princess Alexandra and Prince Joachim handed out grants from their Fund at Amalienborg Palace, Copenhagen. The fund and the annual grants they award is one of their wedding gifts, so perhaps difficult for them to give up, but also a proof of the amenable and responsible approach they take together.

more photos at: Steen Brogaard's site

19 December 2006. Queen Margrethe with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen at Amalienborg Palace in Copenhagen. Merkel was in Denmark for talks on Berlin's preparations to assume the European Union presidency in January.

20 December 2006. Princess Alexandra read Christmas stories for sick children with cancer at Copenhagen University Hospital. Princess Alexandra connected with the children in the cancer ward seven years ago at the time she gave birth to Nikolai at the same hospital. The children sent her drawings and so she payed them a visit to thank them with Prince Joachim. This is the third year in a row that Princess Alexandra has visited the children at Christmas. "I love this traditon, I get so much back. When I see the children smile, it gives me a Christmas present which can not be wrapped in paper. It comes from the heart and goes directly in to my heart," said Princess Alexandra. The book Princess Alexandra took to read was from home which is a favourite of Nikolai and Felix.

Berlinske Tidende
Children's Cancer Fund

6 January 2007. Prince Joachim arrived as a guest at a DR1 Look at Sport 2006 show in Herning.
DR.TV video clip (in the first part of the clip)

5-7 January 2007. Frederik, Mary and Christian travelled to Norway on the weekend 5-7 January to visit Crown Prince Haakon, Crown Princess Mette-Marit and their children at their home at Skaugum near Oslo. Haakon picked up Frederik (who flew separately) and Mary and Christian at the airport before driving them to the Skaugum estate. There were conflicting reports that Christian was not with his parents, although there was no actual information, only supposition, a common media practice when official information is not given. However, it appears Christian was with his parents according to Danish Her og NU. Frederik arrived in Norway first and waited together with Prince Haakon at the airport for Mary and Christian to arrive. There is only one distant paparazzi picture of them in a vehicle, probably driving from the airport. So it seems they were able to stay off the media radar for the rest of the weekend. (thanks to commoner for this information)
This visit was reported in Norway's SEher.no 'Hemmelig Norges-besøk' and by TV2 'Frederik og Mary på hemmeligt besøg'
Also offline in Her og NU (Denmark)

7 January 2007. Sydney's The Sun-Herald (the social page) has reported:

Mary's mate to wed
He's been on Crown Princess Mary's two most important guest lists and now her old friend, the handsome Hamish Campbell, has a chance to reciprocate. The princess's Sydney-based ex-flatmate and godfather to her firstborn, Prince Christian, will marry his long-time partner, Genevieve Taubman, in late March. As Campbell, a financial advisor, and PR executive Taubman attended both the royal wedding and christening in Copenhagen, it's likely they'll invite the royals to their own nuptials - but even the bride can't confirm it yet. At the time of print, she and her mum were still finalising their 150-strong guest list.
In any case, an invitation may be a mere formality, as at the time of the wedding Mary will be seven months pregnant with her second royal roo [!!] and unlikely to risk a long-haul flight. The location, however, does provide extra incentive for a royal visit. The nuptials will take place at a friend's property in picturesque Evandale, Tasmania, an easy drive from the princess's family home in Sandy Bay. Both she and Campbell are Tassie-raised, and met at university there.
Taubman, who has been engaged to Campbell since June, will wear a wedding gown designed by Toni Maticevski. The couple will honeymoon in Tasmania before taking a longer trip to Europe and Africa later in the year.SMH/SH

10 January 2007. Princess Alexandra attended the information day for the MERMAIDs cancer research project at Deloitte House in Copenhagen.
(Photos by Carsten Snejbjerg/POLFOTO)

11 January 2007 Prince Joachim participates at the 100th anniversary of the Tønder Business School.

From Kongehuset the donations to organisations by Queen Margrethe's and Prince Henrik's Fund have been announced by the Lord Chamberlain Ove Ullerup. Altogether 885,000 kroner has been awarded to 37 different organisations and individuals for the year ending 2006. The fund began as Frederik's and Mary's is now, as a wedding present, when Margrethe married Henrik and was the heir to the throne.

From the Greenland Collector (stamps) (pdf) A second photo, taken when the new Greenland stamp photo was taken of Frederik, Mary and Christian, by Steen Evald.

15 January 2007. Prinsesse Alexandra attended a function at Frederiksberg Gymnasium concerned with a campaign for women and kids in violent family situations. The campaign is "Break up - before you break down".

Some sad news. A little boy called Elias who Mary met last August at a family course in Horsens for kids with heart problems and their families has died. At the time, Mary greeted little Elias aged eight months, who was born without a left ventricle. During the first six months of his life the little fellow had been through five quite complicated operations and with some more treatment he was expected to do well.
"How sweet and cute you are. You are at a curious age," Crown Princess Mary said encouragingly at the time. Unfortunately Elias became ill unexpectedly and he died at the end of last year. His parents have written to Crown Princess Mary expressing their view that her visits and support greatly help the spirits of the children and the families and by also raising awareness of the problems of children with heart problems. The grieving parents have been very positive and continue support for sick children in circumstances such as their Elias. The photographs are of them at the family course last August when Crown Princess Mary visited.
The Heart Association Newsletter (in pdf)

B.T. 'Marys hjertebarn død'

16 January 2007. Crown Princess Mary attended a working meeting at the World Health Organisation, Regional Office for Europe in Copenhagen, for which Mary is patron.

17 January 2007. Crown Princess Mary attended a working and planning meeting of the Heart Association. Mary is the Heart Association patron.

15 January 2007. Princess Alexandra was involved with the official inauguration of Hillerød as a UNICEF City 2007. Prinsesse Alexandra was a guest at Frederiksborg Castle on Monday afternoon in her capacity as a sponsor for UNICEF Danmark. Princess Alexandra revealed the UNICEF City Logo, and gave out badges to the local UNICEF ambassadors who will work on initiatives to collect money for UNICEF projects.
With thanks to Madeleine for the photo - you can see more at her website Madeleine Glindorf

TV2/Lorry (2:07) video clip

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