Farmer gets to party with prince

SALLY KIDSON
Last updated 13:00 24/10/2012

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Wakefield farmer John Levy will be swapping his gumboots and overalls for a suit when he attends Prince Charles' birthday in Wellington.

The 62-year-old who shares the same birthday as the prince, has been chosen as one of the 64 guests to attend a Kiwi birthday for Prince Charles at Government House on November 14.

More than 1500 Kiwis, who were born on the same day as the prince, applied to attend the prince's 64th birthday party, part of his royal tour to mark the Queen's diamond jubilee.

Government House yesterday revealed the full list of guests for the Kiwiana-themed occasion.

Mr Levy said he had joked for years that he had the same birthday as Prince Charles and when the call came out for people who shared the birthday to attend his birthday celebration, he thought it would be fun to apply.

He was away for the weekend and came back to find a letter saying he had been picked.

"It's exciting. I won't ever have another opportunity like that.

"It's quite fun really. We've had people ringing us winding us up saying Pip (his partner) would have to go and buy new clothes. I think for all the pomp and circumstance, I think it's a fun thing. We will make it fun."

He also has a brother in England who is a royalist and he would love the chance to be able to tell him, he had lunch with Prince Charles.

Mr Levy will be taking his partner Pip Reeve to the royal lunch. They are yet to hear what the dress code is. Government House said that information would be included in a formal invitation they were to send out.

Mr Levy said he was realistic he might not get the chance "to say boo" to the prince personally, but if he did he reckoned he could have a five minute conversation "with some meaning".

Prince Charles is World Ambassador for Wool so they would have a few things to talk about.

Mr Levy said he was a royal supporter and he did not think Prince Charles had had an easy road, and believed there was more to him than people thought.

He said he was also looking forward to the chance to meet the Governor General Sir Jerry Mataparae, who also celebrates his birthday on November 14 - at the birthday celebrations.

"That's going to make it special."

Wellingtonian Mary Crosby, 101, will be the oldest guest at Prince Charles' birthday party.

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