Prince Charles Visits Poundbury

The Prince of Wales's model village in Dorset was given an economic boost on Friday November 25th 2011, when the royal opened a Waitrose store in the development.

The new upmarket supermarket has created 43 jobs for local people at a time when the country is experiencing a downturn.

Charles toured the outlet in the new Queen Mother Square in Poundbury, and was greeted on his arrival by hundreds of residents and a brass band.

The food retailer sells the Duchy Originals at Waitrose range which was founded by Charles in 1990 and later became a joint venture with the food retailer.

Andy King, a dairy farmer from Ilminster, Somerset, is an organic milk supplier for the Duchy brand in England and Wales and chatted to the royal during the visit.

The farmer, who has been supplying milk to Waitrose for 10 years and has met the Prince before, said:

"It was lovely to see him again. He understands the difficulties we are facing in the industry - but thank goodness things are picking up.

"He really does have an understanding of farming and what we are trying to do - trying to build a sustainable business over the long term.''

Later Charles walked across Poundbury to see the status of the development and visit the new headquarters of the Dorset Red Cross, which relocated to the settlement in April.

The Prince, who is president of the British Red Cross, met the organisation's Dorset president Dr Isobel Smart.

She told the royal:

"Thank you so much Sir for coming and opening our new building in this our centenary year, it is a wonderful honour. Everyone who works here absolutely loves the new building and is thrilled you are opening it for us.''

The Prince, after unveiling a plaque to mark the opening, said:

"I am so glad this building works for you all, and to the volunteers thank you all for all of your wonderful efforts, you are all marvellous.''

The visit to Dorset ended with Charles planting two trees - a lime and sycamore - along the Bridport Road into Dorchester.

They form part of a royal wedding avenue of trees that commemorate the royal nuptials of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Rows of elms had stood in their place but they were lost to disease.

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