High tea with Prince Charles

By Dean Taylor

Te Awamutu McDonald's owners Tony and Angela Rowland are swapping their work clothes for their finery tomorrow when they celebrate Mr Rowland's birthday with the future King of the Commonwealth.

Wednesday, November 14 is the future monarch's 64th birthday, shared with New Zealand's Governor General, Lieutenant General the Right Honourable Sir Jerry Mateparae (who will turn 58).

To celebrate Sir Jerry will host a birthday party at Government House for Prince Charles and 64 other New Zealanders (and their partners) also born on November 14.

And in that party will be the Rowlands.

The couple are looking forward to the event, although they are a little nervous.

But they say it isn't something everyone gets to do - meeting the future King in such important surroundings.

Mr Rowland says he saw a story on the television about sharing the birthday and decided he would look into it.

He went online and saw that anyone over the age of 18, born on November 14, could apply.

Mr Rowland filled out the form and was surprised when he was notified that he had been selected.

Over 1500 Kiwis entered the draw and from what Mr Rowland can see of the invitation list he is one of only two people from the Waikato attending.

The official invitation arrived last week, with directions to get into the event and the rules of etiquette.

The couple have to break out the good clothes for the party, and must remember how to address Prince Charles and Camilla, and their host, and remember to be on their best behaviour.

The rules include not asking to be photographed with the royal couple, although discrete photography is allowed.

Mr Rowland says he was aware from a young age that he shared a birthday with the Prince of Wales - now it will really be shared.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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