History repeated as Longford youngster rubs shoulders with Prince Harry

Jessica Thompson

Reporter:

Jessica Thompson

Email:

jessica.thompson@longfordleader.ie

Prince Harry

Prince Harry and Finn Doherty examine a historic photograph of their great-grandmothers meeting in 1927.

History often repeats itself and that was certainly the case when five-year-old Finn Doherty met Prince Harry - a whole 91 years after his great-grandmother had a similar encounter with Harry's great-grandmother, the Duchess of York.

Finn is the grandson of Longford couple, Bill and Eithne Doherty, whose son Bobby was educated at St Mel's College and graduated from NUI Galway with a Masters Degree before he moved to Australia where he married his wife Edwina.

The couple have three children, Aidan, Finn and Abby and five-year-old Finn was thrilled to get the opportunity to meet Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan earlier this month.

When meeting the royal couple, Finn had two gifts: one was a bunch of flowers for Meghan and the other was a sepia photograph (below) of Rose-Marie Waddy, his great-grandmother who, at age eight, met the Duchess of York on the steps of the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney in 1927.

The Duchess and Duke of York at the time were the royal representatives of the provisional Parliament House in Canberra that year.

Rose-Marie's father was the chief surgeon at the hospital and can be seen in the photograph standing behind the matron.

The beautiful image shows the Duchess smiling at the little girl as she accepted a bouquet of flowers.
Little did they know at the time, their great-grandsons would be doing the same thing almost a century later in Dubbo, New South Wales, Australia.

In a touching moment, Prince Harry squatted down in the rain in front of Finn so that the pair of great-grandsons of the women photographed could examine the historic image together.

Finn's brush with royalty added a new chapter to his family's ties with the House of Windsor and a souveneir photograph that he will probably cherish forever.