History from across the centuries, Royalty from the 21st

Thu 23rd November, 2017
 

Danish pastries & rekindled Invictus ‘bromance’ for Prince Harry’s second day in Denmark

Prince Harry spent a second day in Denmark today with visits to a Danish bakery, a pioneering school and to meet service personnel and veterans who competed in the Invictus Games for Denmark a few weeks ago.

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Harry’s first port of call, following a meeting with Queen Margrethe and evening at a theme park yesterday, was a Danish bakery to meet volunteers and users of mental health campaign, ‘One of Us’. The project is much like the Heads Together campaign that Prince Harry is part of: to de-stigmatise mental health.

Taking the opportunity to warn of the dangers of young people using social media too much, Harry said:  “People are spending far too much time online and it’s like a mental running machine that they can’t get off.

prince harry began his day with danish pastries – talking mental health at a bakery (kensington palace)

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“You wouldn’t put your body through such a workout,” he commented. “I’m the last person to say ban it but people are suffering from mental fatigue and getting burnt out. We all need to talk to each other more.”

The Prince was being shown around the bakery by head chef Claus Borre, but even surrounded by dozens of delicious looking Danish pastries, Harry declined to sample one.

Speaking later about the Royal’s visit, charity ambassador Troels Torp said: “It was great to talk to the Prince as I thought he was an equal.

“You could see he had been in a dark place once himself because of his mother and that’s why he can relate to us. He was very kind and caring and down to earth.”

For Harry’ next engagement, he was joined by a member of Danish Royalty – Prince Joachim, the youngest son of Queen Margrethe – at the Copenhagen Danish Veterans Centre, where sport and teamwork are used to rehabilitate wounded members of the Danish military.

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Greeting him at the centre were competitors from this, and previous years’ – Invictus Games. Watching a game of rolling football, Harry was almost hit in the legs by a player on a board; the players lie or sit on the boards to manoeuvre themselves around the playing area.

He also got to watch seated basketball with Prince Joachim.

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Harry was also reunited with Danish veteran Maurice Manuel – an  image taken in Toronto of Harry kissing Maurice’s head was broadcast around the world.

Harry joked: “My lips have never recovered.”

After the royal visitor left, Maurice commented: “It was amazing as always. The work he is doing is alpha mega.”

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He said Harry’s visit had shifted the ‘focus’ onto the games in Denmark and the plight of wounded veterans. “There hasn’t been that much coverage… suddenly everyone is asking about it,” he said.

The Royal spoke with numerous other Invictus competitors who had represented Denmark over the last few years, including one man who was so determined to compete, he did so with three broken ribs.

During the visit, Harry also privately met with the family of fallen Danish soldier Morten Krogh Jensen, whose body was on the Prince’s flight home after his first tour of Afghanistan. Harry has credited this experience – and that of the war – as his inspiration behind the Invictus Games.

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The Royal met with Mr Jensen’s mother and father alone. It is not known what the group discussed and the family did not want to comment on their meeting with the Prince.

Speaking previously about the experience, Harry told of how he had been pulled out of Afghanistan 10 weeks into his tour, following an article in a foreign magazine that revealed he was in the conflict zone, leaving him feeling devastated.

Describing his flight home, the one-time army captain has said: “I was broken. I didn’t know what was going to happen to them (his fellow British soldiers) and suddenly I find myself on a plane that’s delayed because a Danish soldier’s coffin was being put into the plane.”

Speaking ahead of the Invictus games in Toronto last month, he said: “As I was waiting to board the plane, the coffin of a Danish soldier was loaded on by his friends.

“Once on the flight, I was confronted with three British soldiers, all in induced comas, with missing limbs, and wrapped in plastic… The way I viewed service and sacrifice changed forever. And the direction of my life changed with it.”

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prince harry tells students in copenhagen that they can change the world (kensington palace)

For his final engagement of the hugely successful visit to Denmark, Harry visited the pioneering Oerestad Gymnasium School, where a student conference was being held on ‘making a difference’. The Prince joined a number of workshops and chatted to students on subjects ranging from volunteering, to voter turnout at elections, to UN Global Goals, and how young people can get involved with projects that have a global agenda.

Speaking passionately to the students, Harry said: “It’s great to see so many young people passionate about social change.”

“Every single one of you can make a difference, I promise you, you can.”

Prince Harry’s visit to Denmark is one of a number of royal tours in Europe organised by the government this year, speculated to be ‘soft-diplomacy’ following the Brexit referendum, and ahead of a trade deal being cemented.

Latest comments
  • why has prince frederike and princess mary have not met with prince harry while he is in denmark

    • Hi Gloria. Royals usually meet when patronages or events cross over, but in this case, Frederik is in Thailand at the funeral.
      Victoria

  • Touching words from the Prince

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