Big crowds and bright sunshine have greeted Prince William and Kate at Sydney’s Royal Easter Show.
The Sydney Royal Easter Show could have been renamed the Cambridge Royal Easter Show on Good Friday.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge made a two-hour visit to the show at the Sydney Olympic Park on a perfect warm autumn Sydney day.
The show, which was founded in 1822, attracts close to 900,000 visitors every year. And it seems many of them were there on Friday, greeting the royal couple with wild cheers and applause.
Kate wowed by wearing a white cotton lace dress by Australian designer sisters, Nicole and Simone Zimmermann.
However, like many eight-month-olds, Prince George was deemed too young to see the show – but it didn’t mean he was forgotten.
While admiring piles of root vegetables in the South East Queensland display, Kate told preserve maker Diana Lisle that George was particularly fond of sweet potatoes.
And there were plenty of presents. A trolley was brought to cope with the flow as the crowds passed books, Possum Magic and Peppa Pig toys and bouquet after bouquet to the royal visitors.
The couple were greeted by the president of the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW, Glenn Dudley, and his wife, Jennifer, before being taken to look at a fresh food display in the main exhibition dome.
A female security guard collapsed just before the royals arrived and was loaded into an ambulance.
It might have been the bright sunshine. It might have been the royal effect. Australians have warmed to William and Kate on this trip.
“They’re such a lovely couple. They’re so much in love,” Margaret Bryant from Cowra told AAP.
She and her pals Margaret Wright and Marie Whiteman – all in their 80s – arrived in Sydney at 3am (AEST) to see the royals.
The royals saw sheep shearing, vegetables, showbags, skateboarding and snakes.
They also unveiled a plaque in the new Southee and Badgery Pavilion, home to the Show’s arts and crafts, fashion and style and flower and garden displays.
At the Wool for School exhibit, Catherine met last year’s winner, Sophie Aylward, from Kinross Wolaroi School in Orange, whose winning design was a blue woollen dress for the Duchess.
The couple were due to sign the Show’s visitors book upon leaving, but made time to receive posies from a trio of girls and finally a bunch of red and yellow roses from Jessica Badman, 30, and her one-year-old daughter Alivia, on their way out.
Ms Badman, from the Blue Mountains, said the Duchess asked her whether Alivia was walking yet and said her outfit was beautiful.
“I can’t believe that just happened,” said an overwhelmed Ms Badman. “It’s just like talking to a girlfriend, she’s absolutely lovely.”
Then it was back on the Australian tour merry-go-round as the royals were whisked off to Manly for their second engagement of the day.
Just another day on the royals’ wild ride around Australia.