Charles ‘overwhelmed’ by Lismore welcome

John Murphy

The Prince of Wale was the special guest at a 60th birthday party in Lismore Castle on Saturday night for his cousin Lord Hartington, son of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.

The heir to the British throne and Ms Parker Bowles arrived at the castle shortly after 7pm on Friday amid tight security.

The party bash went on into the early hours of Saturday morning following a lavish dinner for more than 20 of Lord Hartington’s closest friends.

Almost 200 locals were invited to a pre-dinner cocktail party which Prince Charles also attended.

One guest Declan Doocey said he will never forget the evening. “Prince Charles came to the drinks reception around 6.15pm and stayed until it ended almost two hours later. He spoke to everyone and was clearly enjoying himself,” he said.

The Prince and Camilla, surrounded by their own security personnel and gardaí, took to the wilds of Knockmealdown mountains on Saturday afternoon in Prince Charles’ armoured BMW.

Earlier, the Prince had strolled in the millennium gardens in Lismore Castle.

Yesterday morning the Prince and Camilla attended a Mother’s Day service in the historic St Carthage’s Cathedral, conducted by the Dean of Lismore, Rev William Beare.

They walked the short distance from the castle to the cathedral via the steep Deanery Hill.

Again the main area around the cathedral was cordoned off by gardaí but a smiling Prince waved to the crowd as he walked past.

The cathedral was packed to capacity and the congregation heard Rev Beare speak of the wonderful privilege it was to have Prince Charles and his party among them.

It was straight back to the castle after the service finished and the historic visit ends today when the Prince flies out of Cork airport back to London.

A Sinn Fein youth group had intended to stage a demonstration against the visit in Lismore Castle on Saturday afternoon but it failed to materialise.

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