The King and Queen visit Västerbotten County
Frida Molin presents The King with flowers at Gammplatsen. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/Scanpix
On Thursday 15 August, The King and Queen visited Västerbotten County.
The King gives a speech on Rådhustorget in Umeå. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/Scanpix
16:52 The King gave a speech, in which he said:
"Västerbotten is close to the hearts of the entire Royal Family. My parents, Prince Gustaf Adolf and Princess Sibylla, were Duke and Duchess of Västerbotten, and so returning here is always special. Only last week I went to the cottage in Forsavan that had been owned by my grandfather, King Gustav VI Adolf, where I fished. Sweden has some of Europe's finest angling waters, and fish have played an important role in Sweden's history."
16:28 The King and Queen arrived at Rådhustorget in Umeå.
Richard Stark demonstrates his concept car during The King and Queen's visit to Umeå Institute of Design. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/Scanpix
15:58 The King and Queen visited Umeå Institute of Design, where they were welcomed by Rector and Professor Anna Valtonen. This has been ranked one of the world's leading schools of design by several surveys, and has around 200 students each year. The King and Queen met three students who are midway through various projects, all of which relate to health and mobility. The first project is supported by the Swedish Childhood Cancer Foundation, and is based on helping children with cancer to be less nervous ahead of their treatment. The second project is a waistcoat that helps children with breathing problems, giving them a whole new lease of mobility. The third project is a degree project focusing on intelligent vehicles, whereby the car and the person can learn from each other.
The King and Queen at HumLabX in Umeå. Photo: royalcourt.se
15:43 The King and Queen visited HumLabX, where they were met by Director Professor Patrik Svensson, who spoke about the education provided. This education aims to be experimental, is supported by Umeå University and various foundations, and has close links with Stanford University. The King and Queen met students who spoke about their projects, involving everything from identifying new ways for children to discover literature, to water-controlled organs, as well as a project based on showing images of the Madonna and child from churches around Sweden.
15:18 Lena Gustafsson welcomed The King and Queen to the Bildmuseet art museum, together with Director Katarina Pierre. Lena spoke about the cooperation between the municipality and industry that made the museum possible. Katarina spoke about the building that has housed the museum since 2012. The new seven-storey building, designed by Henning Larsen Architects in association with White, was nominated for the European Mies van der Rohe Award in 2013. During its first year in its new home, the museum received 90,000 visitors. Find out more about Bildmuseet here.
15:14 The King and Queen arrived in Umeå where they were met by Lena Gustafsson, Vice-Chancellor of Umeå University, and Marie-Louise Rönnmark, Chair of Umeå Municipal Council.
An interview with County Governor Magdalena Andersson during the coach journey to Umeå.
How do you go about putting together a programme to see a county the size of Denmark?
We realised early on that it would be impossible to show the entire county. If The King and Queen had been here for a few days, it might have been possible. We started in the middle of the county, and have covered three of the fifteen municipalities. The quality of the visit is the important thing. I want The King and Queen to come away with a clear picture of what Västerbotten offers today. We took The King's 1976 visit as our starting point. Then, he visited Lycksele and it was good to revisit Lycksele in connection with this year's jubilee.
What was your thinking behind the information during the coach journeys?
The coach journeys are extremely useful, as we can provide information about various initiatives taking place within the county. We want to provide a background to the visit, and in that way the coach journeys can be more than just a way of getting somewhere.
Have you had a theme for the day?
The themes have been culture and the forest. The county has a reputation for development and technology, and this is based on creative environments, in which culture plays a leading role. This will also be seen during dinner this evening, where I have also drawn inspiration from The King's Sweden Dinner in February and have invited representatives from the entire county — the people who bring Västerbotten to life.
14:51 Fredrik Lindegren, Artistic Director for Umeå 2014, spoke about the European Capital of Culture year. There will be a focus on accessibility — everyone should be able to access culture. There will be many Sami elements during the year, and the entire European Capital of Culture year will be divided up according to the eight Sami seasons. The inauguration will take place at the end of January.
Find out more about the European Capital of Culture year here.
14:43 Chairman of the Municipal Executive Board Lennart Holmlund spoke about Umeå Municipality and all the initiatives taking place within culture and sport. Umeå Enterprise Manager Roland Carlsson spoke about industry in Umeå, and mentioned that one thing some of the businesses based in Umeå have in common is that they take technology and innovation as their starting point, often linked to the university.
14:33 On board the coach to Umeå, Marianne Folkedotter and Gunnar Eklund talked about Gammlia open-air museum, based on a new theatrical performance. The museum was opened in 1921, inspired by Skansen in Stockholm
13:22 The King and Queen and the County Governor greeted all the guests at lunch, which was served at Hotell Forsen.
The King test drives a timber handling simulator at the Forestry Technology Cluster mini-exhibition at Vindeln. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/Scanpix
12:58 The King and Queen visited a mini-exhibition of simulators and forest machinery. The exhibition was organised by the Forestry Technology Cluster.
The King speaks with Scouts from the Centrumkyrkan Scout Group in Vindeln. Photo: royalcourt.se
At Vindeln. Photo: royalcourt.se
12:46 The King and Queen arrived at Vindeln. 12:22 Eric Thorstensson from Vindeln Municipality explained that the municipality has low levels of unemployment and that one in seven residents are self-employed, mainly within forest technology but also within food production. The municipality invests heavily in young people and leisure activities to encourage families to stay in the municipality. Tourism, particularly in connection with fishing, is increasing.
Heading towards Vindeln, the coach passed the Vindel River, which in 1993 was designated a national river by the Swedish Riksdag. Photo: royalcourt.se
11:54 Marianne Folkedotter spoke about her work as Sweden's only narrative curator. She works at Västerbotten Museum, preserving and developing oral traditions within the county.
11:42 On the coach to Vindeln, Lilly Bäcklund spoke about Lycksele and industry in the municipality. Tourism is incredibly important to the municipality, with the zoo, the Lappland Hotel and Motor Week at the end of July being three major attractions.
The King and Queen are shown the Sami Treasures exhibition by curator Mikael Jakobsson. Photo: royalcourt.se
11:14 The King and Queen arrived at the Forestry Museum, and were shown the Sami collection, the only one of its kind in Sweden. 2,500 objects have been collected by Birger Nordin, one of Sweden's most prolific collectors of Sami artefacts. 10:58 The King and Queen arrived at Gammplatsen, where they were met by Karin Söderlund, Chair of Lycksele Local History Society, and a children's choir who sang Sami songs. Karin spoke about Lycksele and its royal history. King Karl IX had a church built in the area. King Gustav II Adolf built a school, meaning that Lycksele has had uninterrupted schooling since the 17th century.
GammplatsenGammplatsen is where Lycksele has its origins. It was here that the town was founded in 1607 as a church and market town. The Sami and the settlers met here to do business with each other. Since 1948, Gammplatsen has been a heritage museum, and historic buildings have been brought here from various locations in Lycksele Municipality.
Find out more about Gammplatsen here.
At the seal pond, The King and Queen learnt about seals, including the fact that they can live for over 40 years and stay underwater for up to 20 minutes. Photo: royalcourt.se
10:31 The King and Queen visited the seal pond, where keeper Maj-Britt Lundqvist described how they are fed. 10:11 The tour began on the zoo train. The King and Queen saw elk and deer. 10:08 The King and Queen arrived at Lycksele Zoo.
Lycksele ZooSweden's most northerly zoo specialises in Nordic animals. Lycksele Zoo was founded in 1959 by Holger Lithner. In 1966, the zoo moved to its currently location at Brännberget, and it is now Norrland's biggest tourist attraction, with a variety of wild and domestic animals.
09:59 County Governor Magdalena Andersson welcomed The King and Queen and spoke about the county. This is Sweden's second largest county, and is the size of Denmark. She then handed over to Chair of the Municipal Executive Board Lilly Bäcklund, who welcomed the royal visitors to Lycksele Municipality and spoke about the visit to the zoo.
09:51 The King and Queen arrived in Lycksele, where they were met by County Governor Magdalena Andersson and her husband, together with representatives from Lycksele Municipality. A children's choir was also present.
The programme for The King and Queen's visit on Thursday 15 August.09:30 The King and Queen arrive at Lycksele Airport, and are welcomed to Västerbotten County by County Governor Magdalena Andersson. 10:15 The King and Queen visit Lycksele Zoo. 10:55 The King and Queen visit Gammplatsen, where Lycksele has its origins. 12:30 The King and Queen arrive at Vindeln. 13:30 Lunch at Hotell Forsen, at Vindel Rapids.15:00 The King and Queen visit Umeå University's arts campus. 16:25 The King and Queen arrive at Rådhustorget. The King gives a speech. The day in Västerbotten County concludes with dinner hosted by the County Governor at the County Governor's official residence.
County visits 2013In connection with The King's 40th jubilee, The King and Queen will be visiting all of Sweden's 21 counties during the year.
Find out more about the county visits here.