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Duke of Edinburgh visits Bucks youth charity
THE Duke of Edinburgh praised the work of a youth residential training centre during a visit to south Buckinghamshire this afternoon.
Prince Philip inspected the redevelopment of London Youth’s Woodrow High House before sitting down to lunch with current residents of the centre, which takes in 6,000 young people every year.
The Duke’s visit was concluded with a reception, where he greeted benefactors who have donated towards the Wonderful Woodrow Campaign – which has raised £800,000 towards the High House revamp.
His Royal Highness, who has been patron of the charity since 1946, said: “Ever since I have been associated, London Youth has done a marvellous job in London. This facility gives opportunities to so many young people.
“It wouldn’t be possible without the generous benefactors. Looking after the place is a major task.”
Having toured Woodrow High House, the Duke joked the building needed all the TLC and donations people could muster.
He said: “Having looked round the place, the High House is not a great advertisement for the architect – it’s the most chaotic building I have seen.
“I hope those that contributed [to the campaign] feel righteous. I can give you one guess how you could feel even more righteous...”
Head of the centre, Martin Curtis, said: “When we took him on the tour, it wasn’t the case of just taking him on the nice parts, we showed him the bits that needed work too.
“This is a building, like the Forth Bridge, we decorate one room and by time we’ve done bedroom 25, we’re back at the first one again. It’s part of an ongoing commitment we need to put in as a charity to maintain.
“He was very interested in what we do here, how we run and how we benefit youth clubs. He asked very pertinent questions.
“He was in good spirits, he was good fun to take around, he made us feel at ease, same with the people at lunch, it was a lovely atmosphere.”
Mr Curtis reiterated an appeal for donations towards the Woodrow appeal.
The £800,000 has been used on essential safety work on the 17th century building, but an additional £200,000 is being sought for internal improvements.
Visit www.woodrow-high.co.uk for more information.