10 April 2012

Easter break summary

Statue of police inspector Sigvard Larsen (1948-1928), "father of the police act", outside his home in Storgata, Lillehammer.

This year's Easter break was spent with family and friends at Hafjell and Mandal, and I decided to take a little break from my blog as well. The only exception was the addition of a photo and a postscript to my blog article of 20 March 2012, The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall in Norway. The addition was made the only evening I spent in Oslo after the stay at Hafjell and before I travelled down to Mandal. Here is a summary of various news etc. I most likely would have written about (not necessarily in a chronological order, though) if I spent the whole vacation in front of my computer instead of being with my family:
  • A few days before I travelled up to Hafjell I thought about the expected birth of Peter and Autumn Phillips second child. It would be so typical if the child was born when I was not able to write about it right away. And of course, the news of the birth of Isla Elizabeth Phillips, the second great grandchild of Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh, came on 30 March, the very day I was driving up to Hafjell. The baby girl was born the day before, 29 March 2012, at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital. Peter Phillips is the son of the Princess Royal (Princess Anne) and Mark Phillips.
  • 30 March 2012 was the 10th anniversary of the death of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother (1900-2002). Earlier the same day (Saturday 30 March 2002), I lost my grandmother, Aslaug Trygsland, née Ramstad (1915-2002), so naturally at the time - and also this year - the royal event came in the background.

  • My grandmother Aslaug Trygsland (1915-2002). This must be her confirmation photo taken in September 1930 (see no. 29).

  • 8 April 2012 would have been the 100th birthday of Sonja Henie (1912-1969), the Norwegian figure skater and Olympic champion.
  • Another anniversary that got some attention this Easter was the Titanic disaster of 15 April 1912. Yes, still a few days until the anniversary, but at least two documentaries were broadcasted on Norwegian TV this Easter, hence my comment. A survey of the Norwegian passengers at Titanic can be viewed here.
  • During my Easter break at Hafjell, I visited Lillehammer, which hosted the Olympic Winter Games in 1994. In Storgata I passed the statue of police officer Sigvard Larsen (1848-1928), who is regarded as the "father of the (Norwegian) police act". According to the information plaque, Larsen, who was Lillehammer's first police inspector, was a pioneer in the struggle for more rights to the police employees. In 1906 he even forwarded his own law proposal for a national police act to the Norwegian Storthing. Nothing came out of it at the time, but 6 years later a committee was appointed to review the question. But Norway had to wait until March 1936 before the police act was sanctioned. Why it took that long is another matter. I might look more into in in connection with my work at Lovdata.
  • Concerning Easter, GD.no published a photo of the king and queen of Norway as well as Princess Märtha Louise and the Behn family arriving at Vinstra Station in connection with their vacation at the royal mountain chalet ("Prinsehytta") in Sikkilsdalen. I am not sure where the Crown Prince family spent their Easter vacation, though. It could have been at their own cottage in Uvedal or at Dvergsøya outside Kristiansand. Or somewhere else...
  • GD.no published the photo to illustrate a NTB article which told about a poll Ipsos MMI had conducted for Dagbladet on the Norwegian royal family. The poll revealed that 93% believes King Harald does a good job, while only 1% says the opposite. The numbers for the other members of the royal family were 81% (Queen Sonja), 89% (Crown Prince Haakon), 75% (Crown Princess Mette-Marit), 25% (Princess Märtha Louise - 27 % actually think she does a bad job) and 5% for Ari Behn. Not sure why the latter, who, although he is considered a member of the royal family, never performs official duties on behalf of the royal family on his own. Princess Märtha Louise seems to get negative ratings because people can't see the difference between her official role and her private business (her "angel school" etc.). Princess Astrid Mrs. Ferner could have been included in the poll, but is not very well known and was probably left out because of this.
  • During the first days of the Easter break the news that the Norwegian Genealogical Society (NSF) had terminated an agreement with the other Norwegian genealogical association, DIS-Norge, concerning the hiring of office services, was announced. NSF has stated financial reasons for its decision. It has not been received well by the DIS-Norge leadership and surely lead to some debate among the Norwegian genealogists, but hopefully the two associations will be able to co-operate on other matters later on. I have been a deputy member to the NSF committee since 2009.
  • Buckingham Palce announced yesterday, 9 April, that the Duchess of Cornwall had been appointed (to be a) Dame Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order (GCVO). Awards in the Royal Victorian Order are made personally by The Queen, for services to the Sovereign.

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