Prince Charles met with local dignitaries outside the Cattle Market - the last surviving livestock market in Lincolnshire - before heading inside for a tour of the facility, followed by a short speech in the auction ring where he thanked the rural community for their efforts.
His visit marked the launch of the Farm Resilience Programme (led by the Prince’s Countryside Fund) for Lincolnshire, as part of the overall £1.5m programme launched in 2016 to support family farm businesses through business workshops and local networking - which will reach 1,500 farming families nationwide.
The Prince said: “I am thrilled to have the opportunity of coming to Louth and visiting the market here, and I am thrilled that it was possible to save this particular vital part of the rural community’s business world.
“The fact that my Countryside Fund was able to assist a little bit in this campaign has given me enormous pleasure.
“Apart from anything else it shows how important these sorts of livestock markets are in helping to maintain the rural community and the farming community and the whole life of an important part of the world like this.
“So, I do hope that the livestock market now has a durable and sustainable future, and I’ve much enjoyed having the chance this morning of meeting some of you, hearing something about the fact that Lincolnshire Reds are beginning to make a real revival not just here but in other parts of the country.
“I understand how difficult it can be most of the time with the challenges facing the farming community, but I hope that with all the marvellous people involved in assisting in various ways - and a little bit, I hope, from my Countryside Fund - will also help a little bit to enable more farmers to cope with all these challenges in the future.
“I’m enormously grateful to all those who combined to help save this livestock market, and I wish you all every possible success in the future.”
Prince Charles was thanked for his support with a gift of meat ‘of local origin’ including haslet, Lincolnshire sausages, stuffed chine and mutton.
• Visit our website this afternoon to find out what farmers, dignitaries and other guests said about Prince Charles’ visit to Louth.