Prince Andrew visited the county yesterday and met staff at one of its leading companies and local sea cadets.
He visited the Cosworth factory in St James, Northampton, and described the Formula 1 engine manufacturer as a ‘go-getting firm’ which he was certain would be increasingly successful in the future.
During his tour of the factory, the Prince met a number of staff and chatted to them about their work at the pinnacle of motorports engineering.
Firm chief executive Tim Routsis, who showed the Duke of York around, said he was delighted to host the visit, particularly because the Prince had personally requested to see Cosworth’s facilities.
He said: “It’s a great honour for a company like Cosworth to get a visit from a member of the Royal family and this was a visit he’d asked for himself as he had heard about the work we do here.”
The prince toured the factory for more than an hour and saw the firm’s work in the aerospace and defence industries as well as it’s Formula 1 projects, which include making engines for both the Marussia and HRT teams.
Mr Routsis said: “The Prince took a great interest in what we’re doing at the company. He had a remarkable grasp of the subject and the environment companies like Cosworth work in.”
The Prince also confirmed that he was very impressed with the depth of knowledge and technical expertise he saw on show at the Northampton factory.
He said: “I was very impressed with what I saw at Cosworth.
“It’s a go-getting company that is certainly going places.”
During the visit to the county Prince Andrew also visited Northampton College’s expanded campus in Booth Lane where he met civic dignitaries.
The royal visitor also called in on young members of the Northampton and Wellingborough Sea Cadets at Becket’s Park. During the visit Prince Andrew inspected the cadets and unveiled a plaque commemorating the royal occasion.
Dan Watts, 12, who was among the cadets at the event, said: “It was very exciting because it was a once in a lifetime opportunity to see a member of the Royal family. But I wasn’t really that sure who he was.”
Lt Chris Read, the Commanding Officer of the sea cadets, added: “It was an absolute honour to have the Duke of York here and he was very impressed with the cadets.”