Prince Charles marks Lake District World Heritage Status

Prince of Wales visit to Cumbria Image copyright Christopher Furlong
Image caption The prince was greeted by flag-waving schoolchildren at Langwathby Station, near Penrith

Large crowds have welcomed the Prince of Wales to Cumbria, where he has marked the Lake District receiving World Heritage Site status.

The region joined sites like the Taj Mahal, Grand Canyon and Stonehenge on the prestigious list last summer.

Prince Charles was met at Langwathby railway station by a crowd which included schoolchildren and Cumbria's new chief constable Michelle Skeer.

He later unveiled a Unesco plaque in Keswick overlooking Derwent Water.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Prince Charles unveiled the Unesco plaque in Keswick

He told the crowd: "Whenever I come here and, in the words of Psalm 121, 'lift up mine eyes unto the hills', I feel my spirits rise and I know the same is true of countless others.

"I could not be more delighted to be with you here today on this very special occasion in what I happen to think is a particularly special part of the world.

"Official recognition by the Unesco World Heritage committee of the Lake District National Park as a World Heritage Site is a significant achievement, which I am told has taken 31 years."

Prince Charles said he had made regular visits to the area over the past 17 years, beginning "at a time of crisis during foot and mouth".

"Over these years, as I have come to know local people and understand these unique farming communities. I am continually struck by their resilience and ability to overcome trials, whether of family tragedy, pestilence or flooding."

The ceremony was part of a day of events in Cumbria, including a visit to a student-farm in Mungrisdale and a boat trip on Ullswater.

Image copyright Peter Byrne
Image caption Cumbria's newly appointed chief constable Michelle Skeer was on hand to welcome the prince to the Lake District
Image copyright Christopher Furlong
Image caption The prince is a frequent visitor to Cumbria

Lord Clark of Windermere, chairman of the Lake District National Park Partnership, said: "This plaque will give local people and visitors a place to come and appreciate not just the spectacular landscape but also the rich, cultural history of the Lake District as a World Heritage Site."

Environment Secretary Michael Gove was also at the event, along with Minister for Arts, Heritage and Tourism Michael Ellis.

There were performances by schoolchildren and cast members from productions at the nearby Theatre By The Lake before Prince Charles unveiled the plaque, built on top of a dry stone wall.

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