Feilding turns on the charm for royals

20:17, Nov 15 2012
Royal visit to Manawatu
ROYAL FANS: Christopher Cape and Diana Blake were out in Manchester Square early in anticipation of the Royals arrival.
Royal visit to Manawatu
GETTING READY: Feilding, at 10.30am, beginning to fill with people ahead of the royal visit.
Royal visit to manawatu
READY FOR TEA: Gem Stephens, Honor Brown, Frances McColl and Jackie Rush took up their position in Manchester Square at 8:30 armed with flasks of tea.
royal visit
DOG'S DAY: Melanie Donne and her dog Rica have been waiting since 9am for a chance to meet Charles and Camilla.
royal visit
MEMORABILIA: Feilding's royal fans have brought their memorabilia to town. Ngaire Browning and Theresa Rositer show off a picture of a young Prince Charles.
Ohakea
READY TO GO: A convoy of approximately 17 vehicles, including police and Crown limos, is waiting on the tarmac for the arrival of Prince Charles and Camilla.
royal visit
FLAGGED UP: Dina Blake and Chris Cape all dressed up waiting for the royals to arrive.
Plane
TOUCH DOWN: Prince Charles and Camilla arrive at Ohakea.
Landing
KIA ORA: Prince Charles and wife, Camilla, are welcome to Ohakea.
Charles
WALKABOUT: Prince Charles meets people on the streets of Feilding
Locals
MEET THE LOCALS: Prince Charles and Camilla meet a local school girl.
Camilla
HELLO THERE: Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, meets local farm animals.
Sheep
TOO HOT: Prince Charles observes a sheep being shorn at the Feilding farmers markets
Markets
WALKABOUT: Camilla, accompanied by Feilding Promotion manager Helen Worboys, takes a look at Feilding Farmers Market stalls.
camilla
SOMETHING TO EAT?: Palmerston North caterer Hester Guy, right, prepares some food for Camilla at the Feilding Farmers Market.
Feilding
WAITING: Crowds gathered along the road in Feilding
Charles
NICE TO MEET YOU: Prince Charles delights locals by chatting with them as he walks through the Feilding farmers' markets.
Camilla
PRINCESSES IN WAITING?: Children gather outside Widbase at Massey University to greet Camilla.
Snort
ROYAL CARNATION: Heather Relf from Feilding reacts after having a short discussion with Prince Charles. She gave him some carnations which he thanked her for, sniffed, then broke off a single carnation and put it in his jacket pocket.
Flowers
FLOWER POWER: Prince Charles stops to smell some local flowers.
Kiwi
KIWI GIRL: The Duchess of Cornwall gets close to an injured kiwi bird at Wildbase.
Camilla
MASSEY VISIT: Camilla visits with Wildbase at Massey.
Horse
HORSING AROUND: Camilla at the Equine Research Centre at Massey.
Farm
PART OF THE WHANAU: Prince Charles at the Dermer farm.
Dermer
FARMER'S WIFE: Diny Dermer meets Prince Charles at her home.

Delicacies from a farmers market, plants that will soon grace the grounds of Highgrove House and a family remembering their loved one were just a few memories the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall will take with them after visiting Feilding.

About 5000 people turned out to welcome the royal couple to town yesterday. The excitement was palpable before the royal cortege drove down Manchester St and the air filled with cheers, whistles and an impromptu haka as the royal pair stepped out of the car.

Prince Charles and Camilla, wearing a sage green day dress and swing coat ensemble from her favourite designer Anna Valentine, were met by Manawatu Mayor Margaret Kouvelis, and were presented with a posy of yellow and blush pink peace roses by Feilding schoolgirl Sarah Ridsdale.

The couple each took to one side of the road to meet the crowd that had been gathering since mid-morning.

Mrs Kouvelis said she wanted to ensure the couple had a fabulous day.

"It's a chance for us to show off our town and our people."

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The Prince of Wales, wearing a grey wool suit and silver and black tie, charmed his way down a line of hands and faces, stopping every now and then to chat a while and ask how people were.

Feilding resident Aloysia Gray laughed when the Prince asked jokingly if everyone was here for the farmers market, while Margaret Clark was flying the flag for Scotland even though she has lived in New Zealand for 51 years.

"He asked me how long I had lived here and commented that I hadn't lost my accent," she said.

Feilding woman Ann Loader said she managed to shake Charles' hand, but missed out on an encounter with Camilla.

"He's got a firm handshake. I thought he might break my fingers."

She said she was not shocked Feilding had turned on the sun for the royals, despite the forecast.

"This is Feilding, after all."

Rongotea farmer Duncan Rowe said he was impressed at the way Prince Charles took an interest in how farmers were coping through the recession and the way dairy farming was conducted in New Zealand.

"He asked how we were doing through the tougher times and had a good understanding of farming."

The couple had specifically asked to see a farmers market and spent a lengthy period talking to growers and producers including plant nursery owners Maureen and Wayne Healey, from Mauways Nurseries in Rangitikei, who are sending hostas to Highgrove House, the couple's residence.

"We sent a letter asking if we could send some and they accepted, so it was lovely to meet them and show them what they would be getting," Mrs Healey said.

Melanie Donne and her dog Rica waited from 9am for a chance to meet Charles and Camilla.

And Ms Donne and Rica did end up meeting the royals, with a bit of help from Rangitikei MP Ian McKelvie.

An obviously excited Ms Donne said she was spotted by Mr McKelvie, who let her under the barrier.

She said she told the couple it was a thrill to see them and wished them a safe trip.

The family of Feilding soldier Lieutenant Tim O'Donnell, who was killed in Afghanistan in 2010, lined up to meet the couple.

Several family members were holding handmade stuffed monkeys in memory of Lt O'Donnell, who carried one - named Lt Rua Kiwi - with him everywhere in Afghanistan, apart from the day he was killed.

His sister Anna, wearing miniatures of her brother's medals, said she made the stuffed toy for her brother's 28th birthday, while the others were made in memory of him.

"Lt Rua Kiwi went back to Afghanistan to finish Tim's mission for him. He was his representative."

The couple appeared reluctant to leave Feilding town's centre and spent the last few moments before being whisked away shaking a few more hands and talking to residents.

Manawatu Standard