The Earl and Countess of Essex were greeted by crowds of well-wishers when they arrived in Gibraltar today, whilst over the border in Spain politicians continued to complain about a visit they described as "inopportune".
In an overwhelming display of patriotism, tens of thousands of Gibraltarians lined streets decked in red, white and blue for the royal visit, waiting for hours in soaring temperatures for a glimpse of the Queen's youngest son and his wife.
Businesses and government offices closed for the occasion and schoolchildren had the day off to come out to wave flags and cheer as the royal visitors toured the tiny territory on the first of a three-day visit as part of Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations.
With the royal visit coming after weeks of skirmishes between the British territory's police and Spanish fishermen, complaints were still being voiced across the border minutes before Prince Edward touched down on the "Rock".
Spain has accused police from the British territory of chasing its fishermen from Spanish waters in recent weeks and has deployed Civil Guard officers to protect the boats.
Gibraltar and Britain say the police are simply enforcing a law that regulates fishing within the waters of the port of the peninsular ceded to the British in 1713 after a 1704 capture.
Chief Minister Fabian Picardo today went as far as to say "Gibraltar is under attack", but Spain's foreign minister has said the country will continue to protect the country's fishermen in a dispute that has reignited tensions between the two countries over the sovereignty of the peninsular which Spain has long claimed as its own.
Spanish authorities have described the royal visit as “unfortunate,” coming as it does in the middle of the fishing dispute.
Previously, Queen Sofía of Spain opted not to attend a Diamond Jubilee celebration dinner in Britain, in protest over the situation.
The Spanish government also formally protested to the British ambassador in Madrid, Giles Paxman.
But that is not the only dispute between Spain and Gibraltar. Spain has also gone before the European Commission to appeal against Gibraltar’s new tax regime, claiming it is incompatible with European legislation.