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Out and About 2016/17 - Annual Review

16,523 miles travelled in the UK

Out and About

In support of Her Majesty The Queen, every year The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall visit cities, towns and villages across Britain and Northern Ireland to recognise and celebrate success and achievement and to offer encouragement. This year, The Prince and The Duchess visited 43 counties and 78 cities, towns and villages. The Prince and The Duchess saw the astounding work of charities and community initiatives and visited local festivals, businesses and shows.


Cities, towns and
villages visited.


Counties visited.

Highlights and Key Moments


In October 2016, The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh were accompanied by The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall on a visit to Poundbury. The occasion marked the completion of Queen Mother Square and thousands of well-wishers joined the celebrations as Her Majesty unveiled a statue of The Queen Mother by sculptor, Philip Jackson. It marked a milestone in the life of Poundbury — an urban extension to Dorchester built according to the principles of sustainable urban planning and design advocated by The Prince of Wales.

Work began on Poundbury in 1993 to create an urban quarter of Dorchester which places people, rather than cars, at the heart of the design process. Commercial buildings are mixed with residential areas and leisure facilities to create a walkable community. Today, Poundbury is home to 3,000 people in a mix of private and affordable housing. The community also provides employment to 2,100 people and is home to 185 businesses.

Living in Poundbury gives me the greatest sense of belonging to a community. I can walk to work and meetings with local businesses I network with. I can walk to the shops, cafes and restaurants. My business’s flagship store is in Poundbury and we currently have ten other stores in the UK so I spend lots of time in the car. Not needing to use my car when I am at home is very important to me. I can’t imagine living anywhere else now. I love the mix of houses and businesses that attract different mixes of people and being a member of the PRA (Poundbury Residents Association) gives me lots of opportunities to mix with the Poundbury residents.”

Kate Atkinson, Owner, Bridal Reloved

Dumfries House has had a massive impact on Health and Wellbeing for pupils in the Supported Learning Centre. The weekly visits have become embedded in our curriculum and have raised the expectations and aspirations of the pupils. The positive impact on physical activity and the understanding of food issues and sustainability is only a part of what the young people are gaining from their visits. Being in the beautiful surroundings of the Dumfries House Education Garden has enabled the pupils to engage with Numeracy and Literacy in a calm and relaxing atmosphere.”

Ann Barbour, Cumnock Academy Supported Learning Centre on access to the Food Education Programme

Being employed in the gardens at Dumfries House has given me an opportunity to develop my career, gain training and RHS qualifications in horticulture.”

Kris Muir, locally employed Estate worker

Northern Ireland

In Northern Ireland, Their Royal Highnesses conducted events in a wide range of locations. The Prince of Wales opened a cyber security centre in Belfast and a restored Presbyterian chapel, now an arts centre, at Portaferry in County Down. Their Royal Highnesses visited the Ulster Carpets factory and the Yellow Door delicatessen in Portadown, County Armagh. His Royal Highness went on to visit the Museum of Orange Heritage in Loughgall, which tells the story of the foundation of the Orange Order. The centre has been partly funded by the Irish Government, and the Irish Culture and Heritage Minister, Heather Humphreys, accompanied The Prince of Wales on the visit. The Duchess of Cornwall paid a separate visit to the Armagh Cider Company.

At Hillsborough Castle, The Prince of Wales held meetings with the then First Minister and Deputy First Minister, Arlene Foster and the late Martin McGuinness. The Prince also toured the house and estate to view improvement works taking place there, led by His Royal Highness and Historic Royal Palaces.

Their Royal Highnesses also hosted a concert at Hillsborough Castle, attended by guests from Ireland and Northern Ireland, and representatives from a wide range of organisations. The evening featured comedian Tim McGarry, the Folk and Traditional Group of the Royal Irish Regiment, the DIT Harp Ensemble from the Dublin Conservatory of Music & Drama and an extract from composer Neil Martin’s Belfast Opera, sung by Bruno Caproni.

His Royal Highness is acutely aware of the sensitivities around his visits to Northern Ireland, and he welcomes the opportunity to contribute to encouraging respect, tolerance and engagement.”

Fionnuala Jay-O’Boyle, Belfast Lieutenancy

In London, The Prince of Wales attended a reception for Northern Ireland food producers at Fortnum and Mason to promote Northern Irish produce.

Also during the year, The Prince of Wales made a special recording of the Seamus Heaney poem ‘The Shipping Forecast’ to mark National Poetry Day.  The poem will be part of an archive of recordings at a new visitor centre in Heaney’s home village of Bellaghy, in County Londonderry.

Highlights 2016/17