The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have already made quite the impression since arriving in Australia on Monday.
In addition to cuddling koalas at Sydney’s iconic Taronga Zoo, greeting fans at the Sydney Opera House and sharing a touching moment with 98-year-old war widow Daphne Dunne along Sydney Harbour, Prince Harry and Meghan were in Australia when Kensington Palace announced they were expecting their first baby together.
Now, for the first time, Harry has spoken about becoming a father. During a reception hosted by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove and his wife Lynne Cosgrove at Admiralty House, the 34-year-old royal spoke about how happy he was to be back in Australia and how thrilled he was that the Australian public had welcomed his wife with open arms. In typical Prince Harry fashion, his speech was full of humour – sending the media and guests including Sally Pearson, David Pocock and Missy Higgins into fits of laughter.
“G’day, your Excellency, ladies and gentlemen,” the prince began. “It is great to be back in Australia and especially even more so as this is my wife’s first visit here, so I’m very excited to show her this incredible country of yours. Perhaps not Kangaroo Flats military training area in Darwin though.”
Prince Harry has made several visits to Australia throughout his life and it’s a country that has always been very special to the young royal. He joked that he would be using Cosgrove’s house for a party and that he’d be inviting over all his mates in Sydney. He also praised Cosgrove for serving a rather unique afternoon tea during the event.
“We’re both delighted to be here and really impressed to see you serving beer and tea at an afternoon reception, in true Aussie style,” he said.
Elsewhere in his speech, Harry thanked Sydney for putting on some beautiful weather and noted it was somewhat better than his last visit when it poured with rain almost the entire trip. Still, he said he was looking forward to meeting with farmers in New South Wales who had been affected by the drought this year.
“We started off well today with some sleeping koalas or drop bears as some of the world know them, Sydney Harbour, the Bangara Dancers, who were absolutely fantastic, the Opera House and Admiralty House, and we’re looking forward to going to Dubbo tomorrow to meet those farmers and their families who have been hit by this drought,” he explained.
During the speech, he spoke about the Invictus Games and how proud he was that the Australian people and government had embraced the games with enthusiasm. He also praised the sportsmanship of Australians and said people around the world would be astounded by the talent of those competing in the games. But perhaps the best moment of the speech was when he spoke about his unborn child.
“Thank you for the incredibly warm welcome and the chance to meet so many Aussies from all walks of life,” he said. “And we also genuinely couldn’t think of a better place to announce the upcoming baby, be it a boy or a girl, so thank you very, very much.”
Kensington Palace announced that Meghan is pregnant on Monday, just hours after the royal couple touched down in Australia for their first intercontinental tour together. The royal family said the baby is due in spring, 2019, but didn’t confirm the exact month or due date.
“Their Royal Highnesses have appreciated all of the support they have received from people around the world since their wedding in May and are delighted to be able to share this happy news with the public,” a statement from the Palace said.
In addition to Sydney and Dubbo, Harry and Meghan will visit Melbourne, Fraser Island, Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand.