The Handover of BSAC Presidency from HRH Prince Charles to HRH Prince William
On Wednesday 9th of July I attended the BSAC presidency handover in the presence of HRH The Prince of Wales, Prince Charles and HRH The Duke of Cambridge, Prince William. I was given this great opportunity to represent my club, Oxford BSAC (British Sub Aqua Club) and promote snorkelling.
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The day started early, getting breakfast quickly and running back up to our hotel room to get changed into our club uniform and to pick up my snorkelling equipment and wetsuit.
At around 8am we walked down to the Oasis Sports Center, for our briefing. We were instructed on what we were doing, how to address the Royals and how to curtsy.
It was interesting to watch how much preparation goes on behind the scenes with the Royal Protection officers and police dogs.
I got in the swimming pool at 9:00am and started to train three people. I trained them for over an hour, doing lengths, practicing clearing snorkels and teaching them when to use the signals so that they would be ready when Prince William joined us in the swimming pool later on.
At 10:30am HRH Prince Charles and HRH Prince William arrived, going straight up to the balcony where the BSAC Chairman gave a speech about how Prince Charles was handing BSAC presidency over to Prince William.
Shortly after, Prince William got into the pool with myself and my group, another instructor and a group of younger children.
We introduced ourselves to the Prince and started the lesson. The main instructor asked me to do all the demonstrations in front of Prince William and the rest of the group! We finished the lesson in 10 minutes and Prince William moved on to do some scuba diving.
During my time in the pool my mum had a chance to talk to Prince Charles about encouraging children to become interested in the marine environment.
While the scuba diving was taking place, I got out of the pool and got into place to talk to Prince Charles about beachcombing.
I spoke to Prince Charles about where we look for wildlife in the sea and in rockpools. I was in the group with three younger girls who were playing about in the sandpit with plastic sea creatures, encouraging them to explain to Prince Charles any special facts they had learnt about that sea creature.
After that we had to run over and stand in a line with the other people and get given our certificates by Prince Charles saying that we had snorkelled in the presence of Their Royal Highnesses. After a long tiring morning the Royals went on to another engagement.
Once changed some interviewers from newspapers, the BBC and ITV wanted to speak to me and Tom, the young diver who had scuba dived with Prince William. I had three television interviews and four newspaper interviews!
After all that was over we left the venue and started heading back to the bus (shopping on the way!).
Amelia White (aged 13)
All photos taken by BSAC