Chichester man meets Prince Charles

Chichester volunteer Mark Hillman introduces the Prince of Wales to Milky Way, his life-size fibreglass Friesian
Chichester volunteer Mark Hillman introduces the Prince of Wales to Milky Way, his life-size fibreglass Friesian

SEND a Cow ambassador Mark Hillman met the Prince of Wales on Monday, during an official charity visit.

Mr Hillman, 62, from Chichester, introduced the prince to Milky Way, his life-size cow which he takes across the country promoting the work of the charity. The fibreglass Friesian is a full-sized working model of a cow, which can be milked.

Mr Hillman, a volunteer for the international development charity, said: “I did offer him the chance to milk Milky May but he politely declined.’’

The Duke of Cornwall, the charity’s landlord and president, was visiting the head office in Newton St Loe, near Bath, to see an office extension being developed on the site and unveil a plaque, which will be installed on completion.

He met country directors from Africa and trustees from the UK, America and Germany.

Mr Hillman, a retired police officer, was also formally introduced. It was the second time the pair had met, as Prince Charles presented him with his Queen’s Police Medal in 2006.

Mr Hillman said: “It was wonderful to meet His Royal Highness again, this time in my role as a Send a Cow ambassador. He was really interested in what I do as a volunteer and thought it all seemed like really good fun.”

The charity was established almost 30 years ago by West Country dairy farmers. It now operates in seven countries in Africa, working closely with African smallholder farmers and communities to secure their future.

Send a Cow provides some of Africa’s poorest people with training, tools, seeds and livestock to lift themselves out of poverty.

Prince Charles said: “I do congratulate you on all your work, it’s very important to keep smallholders going. It’s vital.”

The prince also viewed plans for an African garden, designed by TV gardener and Send a Cow supporter Toby Buckland.

Chief executive Simon Barnes presented him with a previously unseen photograph of the Queen as a young princess, which he and his wife Lucy had received as a wedding present:

“I’ll see if Mama remembers it and remembers what she was wearing when it was taken,” said the Prince.

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