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The honeymoon's over: Kate and William are booed

The British royal couple’s love affair with their Canadian fans hit a rocky patch with hecklers in Quebec…

Protestors outside the Sainte-Justine University Hospital yesterday in Montreal
Protestors outside the Sainte-Justine University Hospital yesterday in Montreal
Image: Chris Jackson/PA Wire

BRITISH PRINCE William and his new wife Kate have been booed by French-Canadian activists in Montreal.

The British royal couple, whose wedding in April became the largest-ever event in internet history, have been enjoying a warm welcome on a tour of Canada in the past week. The Daily Telegraph went so far as to say that they have been “getting the kind of adoring reception normally reserved for rock stars”.

However, the love turned bittersweet today as the couple stepped out of their cavalcade to visit Sainte-Juste Hospital in Montreal. The Toronto Globe and Mail reports that a small group of “radical separatists” shouted “Down with the monarchy”, while Kate and Wills fans shouted “Will and Kate, Will and Kate” in response. The protests meant that the couple did not stop to shake hands or interact with the crowd as the have done so far on this trip.

The audio on this ITN video suggests that the royals’ supporters managed to mostly drown out the protestors’ chants.

The Reseaus de resistance du Quebecois (RRQ), a separatist group, reportedly organised the protest and called the couple a pair of “parasites”. The group was expected to stage some resistance to the visit, according to the Vancouver Observer which reports that “they see royalty as a colonial relic, and resent that the sovereign still serves as Canada’s head of state”.

In 2008, the RRQ protested against a St Patrick’s Day parade in Montreal. They complained that it was “too English”. One of the founders of the RRQ, Patrick Bourgeois, told The Gazette:

We want Quebec to be present in this parade and we’ll simply parade with Quebec, Patriote and Irish flags… The Irish Catholics fought to be respected, to defend their identity. We Quebec independantistes see ourselves in that. We’re taking the time to underline that.

The honeymoon's over: Kate and William are booed
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  • Montreal visit

    Kate talks to a young girl in a children's cancer ward as she visits Sainte-Justine University Hospital, in Montreal, Canada.
  • Montreal visit

    Security outside the Saint-Justine University Hospital in Montreal.
  • Montreal visit

    Protesters chant outside Sainte-Justine University Hospital.
  • Montreal visit

    Fans of William and Kate outside Sainte-Justine Hospital.
  • Ottawa visit

    Kate and William at a tree planting ceremony at Rideau Hall, the official residence of the Governor General in Ottawa, Canada.
  • Ottawa visit

    Kate puts her back into the tree-planting ceremony.
  • Montreal visit

    William in a cooking workshop at the Institut De Tourisme et D'hotellerie Du Quebec, Montreal.
  • Montreal visit

    Kate comes up with the finished goods at the Institut de Tourisme, Montreal.

All photos from Press Association.

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