According to Rooke, the Caribbean tour wasn’t as tense on the ground as it might have seemed in the headlines, and Kate and William did get a positive reaction, especially as they traveled in Jamaica. He explained the story behind one of the more notorious photos from the trip, which showed the couple reaching through a chain link fence to touch the hands of Jamaicans on the other side.
“I took some pictures when they went to a football match, and there was a football player called Raheem Sterling who was there,” Rooke said. “He came out before the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and went over to greet some of the crowd. It’s a football pitch, so it has a fence by it to keep the ball in—it’s not to keep the people out. So before the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge went over, Raheem Sterling had been over and he was shaking people’s hands through the fence at the end. So we were walking from the football pitch to Bob Marley’s house.”
He understands why that photo might have looked “wrong,” but emphasized that the atmosphere around Kate and William was positive during that moment and after. “We got out into the street as we walked to Bob Marley’s house. The public were just all over them, and I was right in the middle with Prince William. He was leaning over with people thrusting their hands out to shake his hand.”
Rooke said despite the challenges of the job, he was happy to have had a career so different from his grandfather, who was a miner in Canada. “The monarchy will hopefully carry on, and not just for selfish reasons,” he joked. yeah. I probably got 15 [working] years left, so I’m sure it will last longer than that.”
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