Prince Charles' visit to Morecambe Winter Gardens 'one of finest moments for town'

Crowds of people lined the promenade to welcome Prince Charles on his visit to Morecambe Winter Gardens for its 125th anniversary.

By Michelle Blade
Friday, 8th July 2022, 4:55 pm
Updated Friday, 8th July 2022, 4:59 pm

Prince Charles spoke to people in the crowd on a walkabout before he went into the Winter Gardens.

One woman said: “He spoke to my mother who said she was 92 and he said she didn’t look 92. She was thrilled to bits!”

Upon going inside he was greeted by Professor Vanessa Toulmin, chairman of the Morecambe Winter Gardens Preservation Trust, and then spoke to representatives from Morecambe Bay Foodbank to find out about the work they do.

Photo Neil Cross; Prince of Wales visit to Morecambe Winter Gardens

Prince Charles then spoke to volunteers at the Winter Gardens.

Whilst the Prince was on his tour, organist Peter Jepson wearing a fez was playing a five-minute melody.

Prince Charles then met with and received a presentation from LiNa Energy founders and staff.

The Prince of Wales then unveiled a plaque hopefully destined for the royal box, saying: “I’m so glad I’ve had this all too brief opportunity to join you today as somebody who I’m afraid has a terrible weakness for trying to rescue heritage buildings of all kinds around this country and elsewhere.

Photo Neil Cross; Prince of Wales visit to Morecambe Winter Gardens

"I’m hugely impressed and hope and pray that I may still be alive when this building is restored. And the great thing is to see if you can bring it back to life at the same time as the Eden Project which could be a wonderful opportunity to give real inspiration to Morecambe which I know has so many difficult challenges.

"So having said that nothing could give me greater pleasure than to unveil a plaque which I’m still uncertain of as to where it’s going to end up. Well done everybody!”

Professor Vanessa Toulmin, chairman of the Morecambe Winter Gardens Preservation Trust, said: “The visit of Prince Charles is one of the finest moments for Morecambe and all its people.

"This was the people’s Palace and now its literally to us the most beautiful building which needs love, care and attention.

Photo Neil Cross; Prince of Wales visit to Morecambe Winter Gardens

"This visit gives it that royal seal of approval.

"It’s really important it gets recognised and I hope Prince Charles comes back in five years time to see it.”

Prince Charles also visited Morecambe Fire Station and Weeton army barracks on his trip to Lancashire.