Kate Middleton and Prince William say they’re “delighted to be back in the U.S.,” but the U.S. may not be as delighted to receive them.
The Prince and Princess of Wales arrived in Boston Wednesday to celebrate several days of public events leading up to William’s Earthshot Prize gala, but received a slightly frosty reception from the city’s basketball fans.
The royal couple sat courtside during the Boston Celtics game Wednesday evening at TD Garden and when their images were projected onto the Jumbotron they were met with a chorus of cheers — as well as audible boos.
ITV News royal correspondent Chris Ship shared video to Twitter documenting the lukewarm crowd response.
So both times William and Kate appeared on the @tdgarden big screen there were cheers but also some boos.
Along with chants of “USA, USA”.
Some say it was expected at the Boston team @celtics with such strong Irish roots.
But, still, not something the Royals get very often pic.twitter.com/281rp6avWV
— Chris Ship (@chrisshipitv) December 1, 2022
“So both times William and Kate appeared on the @tdgardenbig screen there were cheers but also some boos. Along with chants of ‘USA, USA’,” wrote Ship.
“Some say it was expected at the Boston team @celtics with such strong Irish roots,” he noted. “But, still, not something the Royals get very often.”
And it’s true. It’s not often that members of the royal family are openly mocked or ridiculed in public, especially at home in the U.K. In the U.S., it appears to be a different story.
Other media were on-hand at the game, including sports reporter and anchor Avi Carr-Gloth, who also captured the smattering of boos and chants.
Prince William and Princess Kate on the Jumbotron at TD Garden followed by a smattering of boos and USA chants pic.twitter.com/Pf9TVrsvSk
— Avi Carr-Gloth (@avicarrgloth) December 1, 2022
Still, William and Kate played it cool, never showing any reaction that might sully their royal patina. Instead, they smiled for the camera while chatting with each other.
They also shared to their official Twitter account what a “fantastic” time they had at the game.
Baskets in Boston 🏀
Fantastic to celebrate the arrival of #EarthshotBoston2022 in the city and meet members of the community doing amazing things to protect and restore our planet. pic.twitter.com/y4XdCRUk29
— The Prince and Princess of Wales (@KensingtonRoyal) December 1, 2022
This trip marks the first stateside tour since 2014 for the Prince and Princess of Wales. They have travelled to Boston on a three-day visit leading up to the Earthshot Prize gala on Friday, which is William’s environmental awards ceremony.
Their trip, however, has been partly overshadowed by the racist behaviour of a royal aide back home.
On Wednesday, William’s godmother and the late queen’s lady-in-waiting, Lady Susan Hussey, resigned from her role as an honorary aide to King Charles after it came to light that she had repeatedly questioned a Black, British-born charity worker about where she was “from” at a reception hosted by Queen Consort Camilla earlier in the week.
Buckingham Palace called Lady Hussey’s comments “unacceptable and deeply regrettable” while announcing that she had stepped down from the role.
William and Kate’s spokesperson also addressed the racist exchange in front of reporters Wednesday at Buckingham Palace, as the royal couple made their way to the United States.
“This is a matter for Buckingham Palace but as the Prince of Wales’ spokesperson I appreciate you’re all here and understand you’ll want to ask about it,” the spokesperson told reporters.
“So let me address it head-on. I was really disappointed to hear about the guest’s experience at Buckingham Palace last night. Obviously, I wasn’t there, but racism has no place in our society. The comments were unacceptable, and it is right that the individual has stepped aside with immediate effect.”
Netflix also played a hand in making William and Kate’s return and reception to the U.S. slightly more rocky. On Thursday morning they dropped the first trailer for their much-anticipated but never-previously-acknowledged documentary, Harry & Meghan, which will offer a behind-the-scenes look into the life of William’s younger brother Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle.
Harry and Markle famously quit their jobs as working royals in January 2020 and moved to California to live a more private life. Their decision to step back from royal duties — and speak openly about racism and dysfuction in the British Royal Family — has caused much tension and it’s widely understood to have damaged the brothers’ relationship to a degree.
While the brothers and their wives are all currently in the same country, the couples likely have no plans to meet up before William and Kate head home.
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