Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, holds a gift from a member of the public as she walks along Kingfisher Bay Jetty with Britain’s Prince Harry during a visit to Fraser Island, Australia, Monday, Oct. 22, 2018. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, Pool)

Vancouver Island mayor says royals chose ideal spot to ponder future

North Saanich’s Geoff Orr said he likes to think the beaches, forests played a part in the decision

A local mayor says Prince Harry and Meghan Markle chose the perfect place to rest and relax over the holiday season before announcing their decision to step back as senior members of the Royal Family.

North Saanich Mayor Geoff Orr says privacy is one of the hallmarks of the district and he likes to think the majestic beaches and forests he visited as a child played a part in the couple’s decision.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex reportedly spent the holidays at a secluded beachfront villa in North Saanich, but that didn’t stop them from getting out and exploring the community as they were spotted by locals hiking and checking out markets.

Orr says he’s pleased community residents gave the royals the privacy they desire and he wants them to know they are welcome now that the couple say they will spend more time in North America.

Meghan, who is American, has returned to Canada, where the former actress has long-standing ties after living in Toronto while filming the TV show “Suits.”

READ MORE: Prince Harry stopped by during Christmas visit, Victoria-area shop owner reveals

Victoria resident Asymina Kantorowicz says the duke and duchess have already proved to be good neighbours, volunteering to snap selfies of her and her boyfriend on a New Year’s Day hike in North Saanich.

— With files from The Associated Press

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Our View: Province needs to crack down on COVID-spreading events

Illicit parties and rule-breaking gatherings need to be stopped

Langley City corrections officer rides for cancer cure

Even in the midst of the pandemic, the Cops for Cancer Tour de Valley will go on

Many questions for Langley teachers as return to school approaches

Immune-compromised teachers are among those waiting to hear about plans

LETTER: Trudeau wasting tax dollars on vacation home upgrades, Langley man says

Renovations costly to prime minister’s official government vacation property

Summerset keeping ‘live music alive’ with weekly outdoor concerts at Fort Langley eatery

Sundays in August will see a ticketed audience of no more than 50 seated with social distance

STANDING TALL: Forestry workers meet the challenges, remain hopeful

A look at the forest sector in B.C. – and those hoping for the best – amid mill curtailments

Man suffers serious injuries in bear attack in remote area near Lillooet

It was deemed a defensive attack, no efforts were made to locate the animal

Parkinson SuperWalk goes virtual throughout B.C. due to COVID-19

People encouraged to walk around their neighbourhood, along community trails, through parks, forests

Missed rent payments ‘cause of COVID-19? You have until July 2021 to pay up

Each monthly instalment must be paid on the same date the rent is due

U.S.-Canada pandemic border restrictions extended into September

‘We will continue to keep our communities safe,’ says Public Safety Minister Bill Blair

578 British Columbians currently infected with COVID-19

Seventy-eight new cases confirmed in past 24 hours

WE Charity registers as lobbyist, lays off staff, looking to sell real estate

WE Charity said its financial position has been greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic

Conservation seizes fawn illegally kept captive in Vancouver Island home

A Comox Valley resident charged and fined under the Wildlife Act

Pandemic could be driving more parents to get on board with flu shot: study

University of B.C. study gauges willingness for parents to vaccinate children for influenza

Most Read