It’s been possibly one of the worst-kept secrets on Rarotonga, but now it’s official: Queen’s Representative Tom Marsters is about to become a Knight of the British Empire.
And he will receive the ultimate honour of receiving his knighthood from the Queen of England, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, in London next month.
Marsters and his wife Tuaine, who is about to become Lady Tuaine Elaine Marsters, will appear before Her Majesty at Buckingham Palace on November 16, at 10am.
Office of the Head of State secretary Anthony Brown says the QR’s official title will then be “His Excellency Sir Tom”.
The honour will double the number of Knights of the British Empire in the Cook Islands – the sole one currently is Sir Frederick Goodwin. Three Cook Islands women have the title of “Lady” - Lady Ina Goodwin, Lady Marito Maoate, wife of the late Sir Terepai Maoate, and Lady Louisa Henry, wife of the late Sir Geoffrey Henry.
Marsters will represent the Cook Islands at the 100th Armistice Day commemoration in Ypres, Belgium, before calling upon Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to receive his knighthood.
Armistice Day marks the agreement that ended World War One on November 11, 1918.
The QR will be accompanied on the trip by his wife and Brown, as well as two family members.
Marsters would also be provided with protection staff from Belgium and United Kingdom, Brown added.