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Royal couple begin Cork tour

Thursday, 14th June, 2018 11:20am

Children from around the city, onlookers and fans gave a rebel welcome to the HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall this morning.

Their first port of call was the English Market at 11am where the royal couple were met by An Tánaiste Simon Coveney and Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Tony Fitzgerald, on what is the last day of his term in office.

Speaking with the media prior to the couple’s arrival, the Lord Mayor said today is one of the highlights of his year but at the same time he said: “Meeting the people of Cork in Knockneheeny and Ballyphehane is where I feel most at home.”

The royal couple followed in the footsteps of HM Queen Elizabeth II and HRH Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh who took the same tour in 2011.

This visit comes at a very special time for the English Market as 2018 marks a significant milestone in the markets history. This summer the English Market will celebrate its 230th anniversary and the royal visit today will kick start a summer of celebrations.

As HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall made their way through the market they stopped and engaged with several of the market traders and learned a bit more about Cork's culinary offering.

The royal couple are also due to unveil a solid brass plaque to commemorate their visit before being presented with a selection of fresh produce from the English Market to enjoy. 

Welcoming the couple to the English Market were pupils from Scoil Mhuire Fatima, Coláiste an Phiarsaigh Junior School, Scoil na nÓg, Glanmire, St Joseph’s Mardyke, St Marie's of the Isle, Scoil Naomh Mhuire, Cork Educate Together National School, Grattan Street, the Cope School and more.

The Middle Parish Historical Society (The Shawlies) and the Cobh Animation Team also gave the couple a great welcome on Leeside.

Speaking about the visit, English Market Trader Pat O’Connell who famously welcomed HM Queen Elizabeth II in 2011 said: “It is a huge opportunity for us here in the English Market and for Cork as a whole to showcase, on an international stage, the unique offering and unmistakable atmosphere we have here in Cork.

"Visits like this are not only an honour but are a global advertising opportunity and we are thrilled that HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall have chosen to stop here. We have created a hamper with a range of products from all of the traders here in the market which will be presented to them and we hope they bring it home to Buckingham Palace and share with the rest of the royal family.”

Speaking about the 230th birthday, Órla Lannin, Manager of the English Market said: “We are very excited to celebrate 230 years in business this year. We have some great plans for celebrating this milestone and indeed celebrating the generations of traders, customers and visitors who have passed through the market over the last two centuries. To have HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall here at the start of these celebrations is special in so many ways and we are really looking forward to welcoming them.

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