BRITAIN'S head of state, Queen Elizabeth II, and her husband Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, will meet top Slovak politicians, visit the Tatras and attend an ice-hockey match in Poprad during their first official visit to Slovakia. They will arrive in Slovakia, following a visit to Slovenia, on October 23 and leave on October 24.
“This visit will be a celebration of bilateral relations,” Britain’s ambassador to Slovakia, Michael Roberts, said in a press release the embassy provided to The Slovak Spectator. “We are partners within the EU, NATO as well as the UN. Many Slovaks come to Britain to study and work and more and more British tourists are discovering Slovakia. This is why we have many reasons to celebrate.”
The ambassador said that Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip will see examples of British-Slovak partnership in the fields of education, sport and environmental management.
The first day of their visit will start with a ceremony in the Presidential Palace in Bratislava where President Ivan Gašparovič will receive the Queen. Afterwards, the royal couple will attend a dinner along with Prime Minister Robert Fico and Speaker of Parliament Pavol Paška.
Also on the first day, Ambassador Roberts will host a special reception and the royal guests will visit Bratislava’s Old Town and Devín Castle. A state banquet given by Slovak President Ivan Gašparovič will end the day’s engagements, according to the embassy press release.
On Friday, the Queen and Prince Philip, accompanied by President Gašparovič and his wife, will visit the High Tatras. They will take a walk in Starý Smokovec and ride on the funicular to Hrebienok. Afterwards, Queen Elizabeth will go to the historical town of Spišská Sobota, now part of Poprad, where she will see St George’s Church with its historical altar by Master Paul of Levoča. The Duke of Edinburgh will attend a conference on environmental sustainability in the Tatras region and listen to a debate about climate change. At the end of their visit, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip will attend an ice-hockey exhibition match in Poprad between the local team, Aquacity Poprad, and an English team, the Guildford Flames.
20. Oct 2008 at 0:00 | Jana Liptáková