To Great Britain and all British people: I’m sorry for what’s about to happen. The American ambassador to Britain has confirmed that Donald Trump is truly going to visit the UK from July 12th to the 14th. In case you’re wondering or don’t remember, the royal family will be in London on July 9th for the christening of Prince Louis of Cambridge. After that, it seems like the Queen will travel to Windsor Castle, and that’s where she’ll be introduced to Donald Trump. As I said, I’m very sorry.
President Donald Trump looks like he is getting his meeting with Queen Elizabeth after all. After more than a year of back-and-forth about whether he would be heading to the U.K. for an official visit, he is now set to meet the Queen at Windsor Castle in July. The castle was recently the site of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle‘s royal wedding.
U.S. Ambassador Robert Wood Johnson confirmed the upcoming meeting to Sky News on Tuesday. It will not be a full-blown state visit, complete with the pomp and ceremony of a Buckingham Palace meeting and military welcome. Rather, Trump will be in the U.K. for a working visit July 12-14 and is set to see the Queen on July 13. It is the first time Trump has been in the country since his 2016 election.
It is unknown who else, if anyone, from the royal family would meet with the president. Neither Downing Street nor a spokesman for the White House had any immediate comment.
“I mean, he has to see the head of state,” Johnson told Sky News. “Putting his foot on British soil, it’s job one, it’s very important, very symbolic. Meeting Her Majesty is the most important thing, because she’s the head of state, and from then on, it’ll be what the president wants to do.”
The Windsor Castle web site notes that the castle will be closed to the public on July 13, making it the likely setting for the meeting. According to various reports, it is likely that Trump will meet Prime Minister Theresa May during the visit and possibly will play golf at his own course, Turnberry, in Scotland.
One of the traditions of the British-American “special relationship” is that a new American president makes a visit to the UK as one of his first (if not THE first) overseas trip. Trump has been in office for a year and a half, and it speaks volumes of how that special relationship is currently in tatters that this will be the first visit. I think doing the Queen-introduction at Windsor Castle is probably the best option from the British perspective – if Trump was given some kind of pomp-heavy visit to Buckingham Palace, protesters would have descended en masse to block the route. Windsor is a much more controlled environment. Plus, it’s a better excuse for not having the other members of the royal family around. I still suspect that no one will want to put Trump in the room with the Duchess of Sussex OR the Duchess of Cambridge. Trump will meet the Queen, maybe Prince Philip, maybe Prince Charles AT MOST. It’s still awful, I know. British peeps: please RESIST.
Photos courtesy of WENN.