Charles the toast of cheesemakers

Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Charles visited a cheesemaker during his tour of Wales Charles visited a cheesemaker during his tour of Wales

As far as big cheeses go they do not come much bigger than the Prince of Wales.

And the future king's presence at a cheesemakers in west Wales went down well with Royal fans and farmers.

Charles, who hit the headlines amid claims of trying to influence government policy on the environment, spent more than an-hour-and-a-half at Caws Cenarth Cheese in Boncath, today.

After being given a tour of the award winning facility by owner Carwyn Adams, food lover Charles got his hands on a 2.6 kilogramme wheel of Golden Cenarth - which is made with Duchy Cider.

Mr Adams said the Prince had done wonders to champion local producers.

He said: "It was fantastic to have him here today and I was quite impressed about how knowledgeable he was about food.

"The Prince last visited us in 1998, and he was impressed to see how much we had expanded since then."

During his tour of the facility, which produces around 100 tonnes of cheese per day, the Prince was stopped in his tracks at seeing a large photo in the visitor's centre of grandmother Thelma Adams dressed as Cleopatra while in a bath of milk.

The 75-year-old undertook the publicity stunt to highlight the plight of dairy farmers - something Charles was duly impressed by and congratulated her on.

Mrs Adams added: "He was incredibly charming."

Earlier in the day, Prince Charles visited Cnwd Food Company in Cross Hands, and was shown how to smoke fish as well as seeing traditional Welsh fishing boats called coracles.

The small gourmet food business, based just outside Carmarthen, is run by former chef Scott Davis and Kirsty Manning.

After years of working in some of the top restaurants in London and New York, working alongside the likes of Gary Rhodes and Marco Pierre White, Carmarthenshire-born Mr Davis wanted to come home and create his own dishes his own way.

He said: "Our pates and terrines are made using fresh, local ingredients, such as organic chicken livers, pedigree Welsh pork and wild Dinefwr estate venison."

The business also has a smokery and produces premium coracle caught smoked wild fish.

"The location is very important to us and we take our inspiration and raw ingredients from the countryside."

From there, it was on to Melin Tregwynt woollen mill in Pembrokeshire - a fitting engagement given the Prince's patron of the Campaign For Wool group.

Charles, joined by the Duchess of Cornwall in Wales, also attended an event celebrating the growth of rural heritage in Wales - organised by Creative Skillset Cymru, and was given a lesson in weaving by textiles apprentice and Coleg Sir Gar student Sean Jenkins.

It is now the seventh year since Prince Charles and the Duchess took up residence at the 192 acre Llwynywermod estate near Llandovery, west Wales.

Every summer they spend a week in the principality - taking on a series of Royal engagements.

The tour continues tomorrow - with six engagements on the Royal itinerary.

Among them is a visit to the newly restored St Illtud's Church in the Vale of Glamorgan and a reception at their Llwynwermod estate to mark the centenary of Dylan Thomas' birth. Among those expected to be attending the bash is former Catatonia singer, songwriter and broadcaster Cerys Matthews.

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