Ni­cola kisses Prince Charm­ing

Ayrshire Post - - ROYAL VISIT - Stephen Hous­ton

A young lady stole the show at an in­spir­ing gar­den – by plant­ing a big smacker on Prince Charles.

Bold as brass Ni­cole Kay leapt to her feet when the Prince, a keen plants­man, neared the end of the poly­tun­nel.

Ni­cole, 23, had been sit­ting with friends pot­ting pan­sies when Duchess Camilla reached her first dur­ing the visit to Netherthird Com­mu­nity Gar­den in Cum­nock on Thurs­day.

And naughty Camilla ac­tu­ally prompted Ni­cole into ac­tion, whis­per­ing to her: “Hello, how are you?

“Would you like to meet my hus­band?”

To the joy of ev­ery­one around, Ni­cole shouted “Charles” , got up and raced over to him, throw­ing her arms around him and giv­ing him the royal kiss.

Ni­cole, of the River­side Cen­tre adults group, helps with gar­den tasks every Mon­day on the 2.4 acre plot, in­clud­ing her favourite car­rots.

She said: “Prince Charles and Camilla were re­ally nice.”

Gar­den founder Mag­gie Camp­bell and other vol­un­teers had to erect gaze­bos for the visit as the rain lashed down.

The Prince was par­tic­u­larly keen to ex­am­ine the pro­duce such as car­rots and cab­bages and to­ma­toes.

The for­mer cow meadow on the edge of Netherthird was turned into a haven for lo­cal peo­ple fed up with petty bad be­hav­iour.

As well as show beds for flow­ers and veg, paths and wooden shel­ters and pot­ting sheds have been built and a na­ture trail formed round the out­side.

The Netherthird Nurs­ery uses it every day as do many mums.

It’s be­come such a stan­dard that in June it hosted its first ever char­ity open day through Scot­land’s Gar­dens Scheme and na­tional or­gan­iser Ter­rill Dobson la­belled it “won­der­ful.”

The Duchess of Rothe­say is the Pres­i­dent of Scot­land’s Gar­dens Scheme and the Prince Charles’ Foun­da­tion re­cently pro­vided fund­ing for a wooden gazebo.

Camilla also stopped to meet two Jack Rus­sell dogs – Ju­nior and Archie – as they re­minded her of her own dogs.

Ju­nior is Mag­gie Camp­bell’s dog and is the of­fi­cial mas­cot of the gar­den.

Ian Mar­shall, 70, comes to the gar­den most days to keep an eye on the tomato crop.

The re­tired joiner from Netherthird has been help­ing for four years, and cre­ated the flower beds.

Ian said: “They asked what we do with the pro­duce and I said some goes to the com­mu­nity café and well as peo­ple who want it.”

Be­fore the royal cou­ple headed back to Dum­fries House Ella McAl­lis­ter, 9, pre­sented them with a posy of gar­den flow­ers and boys Ai­den Hastie, 8, and Robert Mur­ray, 13, with a bas­ket of finest veg pro­duce.

All the kids are ded­i­cated helpers at Netherthird and Ella was sin­gled out be­cause she is “al­ways smil­ing and al­ways car­ing.”

Ella re­vealed: “My wee brother Jor­dan was too scared to tell Prince Charles my dad Iain was the best bowler in the world. So I did it!”

Mag­gie’s son Jamie runs Netherthird Com­mu­nity Ac­tion Train­ing which helps dozens of young­sters with poor chances of get­ting a job gain hor­ti­cul­tural skills.

Mag­gie summed it up: “The royal cou­ple have worked so hard to im­prove and de­velop our sur­round­ing towns and vil­lages.

“This visit means so much to all the vol­un­teers and to the peo­ple from our com­mu­nity.”

Touch­ing Kids from Netherthird Nurs­ery waved their flags

Bark­ing Charles and Camilla meet gar­den mas­cot Ju­nior the Jack Rus­sell

Nice crop Tomato king Ian Mar­shall shares a joke

Great face This Netherthird Nurs­ery girl en­joyed the mo­ment

Per­fect pro­duce Robert Mur­ray, Ai­den Hastie and Ella McAl­lis­ter were cho­sen to make the pre­sen­ta­tion of flow­ers and veg

Put it there Gar­den founder Marggie Camp­bell wel­comes the Prince

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