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Charles and Camilla to visit the Republic of Ireland in May

The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall are to visit the Republic of Ireland next month.

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall are to visit the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland in May, Clarence House has announced.

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall are to visit the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland in May, Clarence House has announced.

Prince Charles and Camilla will also go to Northern Ireland as part of a four-day visit from 19 to 23 May.

In 1995, Charles first visited the Republic of Ireland in the first official visit by a Royal Family member since Irish independence.

The visit deemed a success and understood to be a step on the way towards the eventual 2011 visit by The Queen.

Charles also visited the Republic of Ireland in 2002, but this will be his first official joint visit with the Duchess of Cornwall.

Clarence House announced the trip was being held at the request of the British government.

“Planning is still in progress, and more details will be released in due course,” Clarence House said in a statement.

The visit is being welcomed by Charlie Flanagan, Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade. “Following the reciprocal state visits of recent years, this visit to Ireland will represent a further expression of the warm and friendly relations which now exist between us,” Mr Flanagan stated.

“We look forward to their arrival next month, and to a visit programme which reflects the quality of these relations,” he concluded.

Reports in Dublin hint The Prince and Duchess may visit County Sligo. They may also visit Lissadell House and Drumcliffe Church, where the poet WB Yeats is buried.

The area is important to The Prince of Wales. On 27 August 1979, tragedy struck when the Prince’s great-uncle, Lord Mountbatten, one of his twin grandson’s, Nicholas, and a local boat boy, Paul Maxwell were murdered. An IRA bomb ripped apart the boat they were on in Mullaghmore in County Sligo in the Irish Republic.

Another passenger on the boat, the Dowager Lady Brabourne, died the day after the attack from injuries sustained in the blast.

Charles has spoken fondly of the impact that his great-uncle has had on his life. During his attendance at a ceremony at the Peace and Reconciliation Centre in Bogota, The Prince of Wales shared with those gathered the hurt and anguish he felt after losing his great-uncle, Lord Mountbatten:

“It is an immense tragedy that violence has cast such a long shadow across the whole of this remarkable country for the past five decades. Many of you here today will have experienced unimaginable suffering, and our hearts go out to you as you struggle to come to terms with all that has happened to you and your loved ones. I suspect that many of you will probably not know that my own much-loved great-uncle, Lord Mountbatten, and members of his family including one of my godsons were murdered in Northern Ireland just over 30 years ago. So I feel I do understand something of the bewildering and soul-destroying anguish that so many of you have had to endure,”

Charles and his wife most recently visited Northern Ireland together on official visits in April 2014 and in June 2013.

In April 2014 they welcomed Irish President Michael D Higgins to the UK during his state visit.

Photo Credit: Andy Gott via Flickr

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