Michael Inman June 24, 2012
CENTENARY of Canberra celebrations could take on a regal flavour, with speculation a member of the British royal family will visit next year.
The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall will visit Australia later this year as part of the Queen's diamond jubilee celebrations.
But Buckingham Palace considers the 2012 tour as a stand-alone visit, rather than as a double to include Canberra's 100th birthday, opening the door for a royal appearance to mark the capital's centenary next year.
A spokesperson for the palace confirmed the royal family was considering a possible visit to Australia next year.
The chairman of the ACT and district branch of the Australian Monarchist League, Matthew Sait, welcomed the news.
''I think it's superb [and] entirely appropriate that a member of the royal family attend centenary of Canberra celebrations,'' Mr Sait said.
''Canberra is the capital, it's where Parliament is, it's where the Governor-General is, it's the site of important national institutions and, of course, has a military presence.''
While a date hasn't been set for Prince Charles' visit, November has been mooted as the likely month.
The visit will be Prince Charles' 14th to Australia, with his last trip, in 2005, including a stop in Canberra.
The royal couple will also visit New Zealand and Papua New Guinea while in the region.
Mr Sait travelled to London to witness the recent British celebrations.
While not as grand, Mr Sait said Canberra jubilee festivities would be planned once an announcement on Prince Charles' itinerary was made.
''It was just amazing and I think if the Australian government did something similar the response by the Australian people would've been just as enthusiastic.
''People definitely admire the Queen's 60 years of service and think it's worth celebrating.
''It's an incredible milestone, something only achieved twice in the history of our monarchy.''