3 Mar 2014

Maori King turns down royal visit offer

7:41 pm on 3 March 2014

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will not visit the Maori King at Turangawaewae Marae because the Kingitanga wanted to see them for longer than the allocated time, the Government says.

The Duke and Duchess and Prince George will arrive in New Zealand on 7 April and will visit Wellington, Blenheim, Auckland, Hamilton, Cambridge, Dunedin, Queenstown and Christchurch. They leave for Australia on 16 April.

Prime Minister John Key says there are many demands on the royals' time, and the 90 minutes offered to the office of King Tuheitia is quite generous and longer than any other engagement they have.

But representatives of King Tuheitia decided it was not long enough and rejected the offer, he says.