As Prince William and his wife Catherine arrive in New Zealand today, on the start of their Australia/ New Zealand Royal Tour, there is one family in Brisbane brimming with excitement.
You might look at Mark Lowers and think he looks like an ordinary bloke, but it turns out he is actually the second cousin of the woman about to woo Australia.
Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cambridge and her husband Prince William touch down in New Zealand today to an adoring public desperate to catch a glimpse of Prince George. It is the first time the public is expected to see an extended glimpse of the Royal baby out and about since his birth.
After an eight-day tour of New Zealand, they will finally touch down on Aussie soil and one blood relative is waiting in hopeful anticipation.
Mark Lowers, a 46-year-old mine worker who lives in Brisbane, is actually Kate Middleton’s second cousin.
He told the Daily Mail over the weekend that he would “love to have them over, throw a few snags on the barbie and crack a few cold ones but I don’t think they’re going to have time!”
He’s been in the public eye before. Back when the Duchess was pregnant, his family tree was splashed all over the newspapers. It turns out his mum Lillian and Kate’s mum Carole had the same grandmother, Edith Eliza Chandler.
“That makes them first cousins and makes Kate and me second. I guess the little fella George is a third cousin of some sort,” he said.
“Carole and Mum wrote Christmas cards to each other for years then lost touch.”
Mark’s wife, Tia Lowers, has previously described him in The Courier Mail as “British through and through”, and she says now their daughter, Shae, is showing her heritage. “I’ve always known I have a bit of royal in me – I’m a big tea drinker and love cucumber sandwiches,” Shae said.
The humble Brissie family is happily awaiting the arrival of their relatives but they don’t really expect a drop in.
News Limited has described this Royal Tour as being unlike any other, as it is effectively designed around Prince George.
The royal couple will spend only one night away from their baby – at a camp-site at Uluru in Central Australia.
The Herald Sun writes: “The period of separation has been made easier because Kate is understood to have stopped breast feeding.
“Prince George will be left in the hands of his “super nanny” Maria Teresa Turrion Borrallo, who comes from a society family in Madrid. The royal couple will also be backed up with an entourage of 14 people, including press officers, Kate’s hairdresser and an orderly.”
This morning the Royal couple touched down briefly in Sydney before boarding a NZ air force jet to head to Wellington.
We will keep you updated.