Prince Charles takes on another patronage as his son steps back from royal life

Rebecca Taylor
Royal Correspondent
The Prince of Wales greets school children as he takes on another patronage. (Press Association)

Prince Charles has taken on a new patronage, reflecting his lifelong commitment to the environment.

It comes as his son Harry prepares to step back from senior royal duties, as he and his wife Meghan seek to earn their own money.

Charles, 71, became a patron of Surfers Against Sewage during a day of events in Newquay.

He has campaigned on environmental issues since he was a young man and recently marked 50 years since one of his first speeches about the problem of plastic.

Prince Harry and his wife Meghan will step back from royal duties on 31 March, but will retain their existing royal patronages.

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However they will not be allocated any new ones.

Saying he was grateful to be asked to be a patron, Charles said: “I do admire enormously all that you are trying to do in different parts of the country and indeed, probably around the world.

The Prince of Wales visited the school which was opened in September. (Press Association)
The Prince of Wales with James Otter (right) as he becomes the patron of Surfers Against Sewage. (Press Association)

“How you mobilise quite so many people is astonishing. I can only congratulate all of you on the efforts you make.”

He added: “Having tried to do a bit of surfing myself 40-something years ago, rather unsuccessfully, I only wish I was still able to do it and try out this board.”

The reception was held at Nansledan School, or Skol Nansledan, which opened in September, and the Prince of Wales toured the school and met pupils while he was there.

He was presented with a drawing by five-year-old Whitney, who had written the prince a message.

The picture featured a sketch of the prince in yellow and blue pencil.

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A picture drawn for the Prince of Wales by Whitney (surname not provided), a five-year-old pupil at Nasledan School. (Press Association)

Whitney had then written: “To Prins Charess. My name is Whitney. I love you. I have sor you before xx”.

The Queen has been passing on some of her patronages for the last few months, reflecting a handing over to the younger generations.

In December, she passed over the Family Action patronage to the Duchess of Cambridge, to whom she also gave her patronage of the Royal Photographic Society earlier in the year.

In 2016, as she turned 90, she passed on more than 20 patronages, including the NSPCC and Battersea Dogs and Cats home.

Prince Charles at a reception to mark his new patronage. (Getty Images)
Prince Charles outside the school in Newquay. (Getty Images)

While in Newquay, Charles also visited Celtic & Co, celebrating their anniversary, where he was shown the production process of their slippers from raw sheepskin to ready for sale.

He went home with a gift of the slippers, including a pair for Camilla, to which he said: “Thank goodness for that”.

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Celtic & Co was started by Nick and Kath Whitworth as a small boot-making business in 1990.

It now ships to customers in more than 60 countries, employs 52 permanent staff and had an £8.9 million annual turnover last year.

Products are sustainably made from material such as wool, sheepskin and linen.