The owner of Deep Cove Market in North Saanich has put up this sign after members of the media had inundated the store, hoping to speak to locals about Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, and his wife Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, who recently moved to the area after stepping back as senior members of the British Royal Family (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

Store in Victoria area bans paparazzi to curb royal frenzy

Store owner Rosemary Scott says Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle deserve privacy

A small sign declaring a popular North Saanich business and community meeting spot a media free zone is working, says its owner.

“We have hardly seen any press now,” said Rosemary Scott, owner of Deep Cove Market. “I think they have really backed off.”

The store located at corner of West Saanich Road and Birch Road near North Saanich’s Deep Cove Elementary has served as a familiar and comfortable gathering spot for locals for years, but has also witnessed a wave of foreign media members, who want to speak to locals about Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, and his wife Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex.

The couple, along with their son Archie, recently moved to the area as part of their decision to step back as senior members of the British Royal Family after having spent their Christmas vacation here.

Scott said she put up the sign reading ‘press free zone’ on the store’s entrance after interest from the foreign media had “gotten out of hand.”

She said members of the British media were the first to visit the store.

“They were very nice, obviously wanting to speak to the staff,” said Scott. “However, we were then inundated.”

Media members from the around the world including Italy, Japan and the United States were soon descending upon the store to the point where some started to set up cameras outside the store, blocking its parking lot and bothering customers. Scott has also received phone calls from various media.

RELATED: Local Monarchist says Saanich Peninsula would be a ‘great place’ for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

RELATED: Prince Harry: ‘Powerful media’ is why he’s stepping away

“Honestly, I’m done [with foreign media],” she said, her voice clearly ringing with frustration.

Everybody in the community knows where the royal couple currently lives, she said. But if the couple were to become members of the community, locals would like to give them their space and freedom.

“We are really trying to give them their space and their privacy, and I am just really tired of having the press here,” said Scott.

Not surprisingly, so are the Royals themselves, having threatened to take legal actions against photographers, who snapped pictures of Markle earlier this month, while walking through Horth Hill Park with the couple’s son, Archie.

Scott more than understands this desire for privacy. “Harry lost his mom to the paparazzi,” she said. “So I think he wants to protect his wife and child and have some freedom and that is part of the reason why [they are] moving to Canada, to get away from that. We really just want to give them their space.”

Scott said she believes the community shares her sentiments.

“All the customers I have spoken to are hoping that people can give them their space and be welcoming,” she said. “I don’t think Meghan and Harry don’t want to talk to the public. I think they do. They just don’t want to be harassed by the press. They want to be able to go out and be part of the community and be safe.”

Scott is not the only resident trying to discourage photographers. She said one of her customers has formed a Facebook group, where users can identify locations of paparazzi, when they spot them. “That way [the couple’s] security team knows where they are,” she said.

Royal family

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Green Party pins Nanaimo-North Cowichan riding hopes on Istace

Leader Furstenau in town for the announcement of Chemainus businessman’s candidacy

Duration of Tour de Rock stop in Chemainus much shorter than usual

Four alumni riders don’t get to come for breakfast in COVID year

Gas leak occurs in the construction zone on Chemainus Road Saturday

FortisBC makes repairs while traffic rerouted through River Road

Original drums recovered amid offers to replace stolen set

Chemainus United Church grateful for actions of a caring community

Weeding, pruning, deadheading and battling the slugs

‘Tis the season for Chemainus Communities in Bloom

Weekend sees 267 cases, 3 deaths in B.C.; Dr. Henry says events leading to COVID spread

There are currently 1,302 active cases in B.C., while 3,372 people are under public health monitoring

Lightning strike: Tampa Bay blanks Dallas 2-0 to win Stanley Cup

Hedman wins Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP

Shawnigan Lake’s Kubica gets 25 to life for murder in California

Former Shawnigan Lake man convicted of killing woman in 1990

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Liberals seek to fast track new COVID-19 aid bill after CERB expires

Government secured NDP support for legislation by hiking amount of benefits by $100 to $500 per week

B.C. VOTES 2020: Echoes of HST in B.C. debate over sales tax

Cannabis, tobacco, luxury cars still taxed in B.C. Liberal plan

She warned her son about toxic drugs, then he was dead

Donna Bridgman’s son died at the age of 38 in Vancouver

B.C. food and beverage producers set record sales in 2019

Farmed salmon again leads international exports

Most Read