Prince Andrew is welcomed to Belleek Pottery by MD John Maguire. Picture: Thomas Gallagher
Security was tight around the Fermanagh border village of Belleek on Thursday evening as the world famous Belleek Pottery entertained a royal visitor Prince Andrew.
He was following in the footsteps of his brother Prince Charles who also visited in 2007.
The pottery has had some famous visitors over the years; two months ago British Prime Minister Theresa May among those to have spent time there.
Prince Andrew arrived in a cavalcade of cars at 5.46pm as the rain fell gently on the Fermanagh village on his first engagement on a three-day visit to Northern Ireland.
He greeted Lord and Lady Brookeboro, Howard Thornton, chairperson of the Fermanagh/Omagh District Council and Brendan Hegarty, CEO of the local council before entering the grey picture post card building.
Managing Director of Belleek Pottery John Maguire took the prince and his entourage, which included around 40 local business and community figures, on a guided tour of the pottery, and stopped briefly to chat to a number of the local craftsmen and women.
Mr Maguire said it was an historic day for the village and the pottery: “This is very special day and hopefully another very successful royal visit. It certainly puts the pottery and the village on the map. The last big royal visit was Prince Charles in 2007 and Andrew is continuing in that line and he is very welcome."