Prince Charles wished the students of IT Sligo “good luck in your exams” as he left the college following his short tour.
Even though the tour was only half an hour, the prince was caught short near the end and there was a slight change in the running order when a toilet had to be found.
Prince Charles had just finished meeting with researchers from the Centre for Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technologies (CREST), and was on his way to meet with IT Sligo executive members, when there was a short unexpected delay.
A quick rearrangement of a security cordon allowed the prince to make his way to one of the student toilets after it had been cleared, with five Royal security men going down the corridor before one went into the toilets with Prince Charles and four waited outside.
Everything was soon back on schedule and the prince exited the building to meet his waiting entourage of blacked-out cars which brought him to St Columba’s Church in Drumcliffe, the burial place of William Butler Yeats.
As the prince was just about to step into his car, he turned to the students who had waited to see him and wished them luck in their summer exams.
On his arrival shortly before lunchtime yesterday, the Prince of Wales was greeted by a crowd of up to 200 students. The waiting throngs were rewarded when the prince broke from the agreed programme and went on a meet and greet.
The royal party was greeted at the entrance to the college by IT Sligo president, Professor Vincent Cunnane, chairman of the governing body of IT Sligo and former Fianna Fáil government minister, Ray MacSharry, and college students’ union president, Stephen Doak.
Harpist Niamh McGloin, a Leaving Certificate student from the local Ursuline College, played in the atrium as Prince Charles entered.
He gravitated towards the crowd behind the rails inside as he went to shake hands with the waiting students, parents, and lecturers.
He then moved upstairs to meet students and lecturers from the architectural design course, before being introduced to Dr Jeremy Bird, head of the school of science.
He then met Lorraine Archer, a PHD student who is a direct descendent of the world-famous scientist, Charles MacMunn, after whom the €17m building at IT Sligo is named.
Ms Archer is a researcher with the Center for Environmental Research Innovation and Sustainability (CERIS) and she was among those to show the prince some of the research the centre is engaged with.
The prince also met with staff and students from the school of archaeology where he was presented with two books by their authors — The Archaeology of Caves in Ireland by Dr Marion Dowd, and Anglo-Norman Parks in Medieval Ireland by Dr Fiona Beglane.
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