Prince William visits Lancashire

Prince William (left) in the stands during Blackpool vs Wolverhampton Wanderers at Bloomfield Road for the Barclays Premier League.

Prince William (left) in the stands during Blackpool vs Wolverhampton Wanderers at Bloomfield Road for the Barclays Premier League.

First published in Sport

Prince William put his wedding plans on hold as he watched Blackpool's Premier League clash with Wolves on a friend's stag do yesterday.

The second in line to the throne, who announced his engagement to Kate Middleton on Tuesday, took in the match at Bloomfield Road from one of the hospitality areas with a group of friends.

The 28-year-old was then thought to be heading to the popular Pleasure Beach theme park for a private party with the rest of the group.

William, who is president of the Football Association, met with Blackpool club officials, including manager Ian Holloway, before the match.

"I had the privilege of meeting him," said Mr Holloway. "I spoke to him and shook his hand.

"I told him what a cracking lady his mum was and how much we all miss her, and how proud I am of him and his brother.

"I am a common bloke and he reminds me of an ordinary bloke you would meet in the street. Well done sir, it must be difficult.

"Then I told him to leave our women alone if he goes out tonight! That was a joke. I just said be careful where you go!"

Blackpool is one of the most popular destinations in the country for stag weekends.

When asked if he thought William should return for his own stag do, Holloway quipped: "Yes, and I should have said, 'Don't worry I've got my suit ready with a carnation in it mate. I'll be expecting my invite!'

"It's just fantastic isn't it? I never thought I'd be watched by royalty.

"The future king of England was watching us today.

"Unbelievable, quite a surreal day - but I wasn't thinking much about that in the last couple of minutes."

Blackpool survived a tense finale to win the match 2-1 which may have pleased William who supports Wolves' West Midlands rivals Aston Villa.

A spokesman for St James's Palace said the prince was enjoying a private weekend with friends which had been planned for a long time.

William and his fiancee have not yet confirmed where they will be married or named a date.

It is known the couple have a venue in mind and a date but they are fitting their planning around William's job as an RAF Search and Rescue helicopter pilot and are said not to be rushing their decisions.

William's visit further increased the spotlight on Blackpool, as the Lancashire seaside town was also hosting tonight's edition of hit BBC TV show Strictly Come Dancing.

Comments (7)

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2:16pm Sun 21 Nov 10

ossy says...

Royalty can never be "ordinary" they don't have to struggle like us "common blokes"
Royalty can never be "ordinary" they don't have to struggle like us "common blokes" ossy
  • Score: 0

3:36pm Sun 21 Nov 10

frank says...

i'm suprised he has time to relax after single handedly flying 'his' helicoper on another mission to rescue someone on the mountains. quite how he flies it AND goes down on the winch never gets reported. :)
i'm suprised he has time to relax after single handedly flying 'his' helicoper on another mission to rescue someone on the mountains. quite how he flies it AND goes down on the winch never gets reported. :) frank
  • Score: 0

3:48pm Sun 21 Nov 10

kenbro says...

He is listed as co-pilot in a 4 man crew. He is doing something useful with his life.
That can't be said for everybody these days.
He is listed as co-pilot in a 4 man crew. He is doing something useful with his life. That can't be said for everybody these days. kenbro
  • Score: 0

9:32pm Sun 21 Nov 10

George Khan says...

Did William Putter pay for his ticket?
Holloway putting himself on a pedestal
He's so proud of him..he needs to shut it
I don't care about these people being royal
Brown nosers like Holloway should pay for Williams' wedding day
After all these football buggers get paid too much anyway
These royal putters live off poor people's taxes
And then turn up to watch free football matches!
If he ever comes down to my chippy
I'll send the bill to Holloway
Did William Putter pay for his ticket? Holloway putting himself on a pedestal He's so proud of him..he needs to shut it I don't care about these people being royal Brown nosers like Holloway should pay for Williams' wedding day After all these football buggers get paid too much anyway These royal putters live off poor people's taxes And then turn up to watch free football matches! If he ever comes down to my chippy I'll send the bill to Holloway George Khan
  • Score: 0

10:21pm Sun 21 Nov 10

anotherview says...

No George, the buggers who live of poor peoples, and rich peoples taxes are the rogues, thieves, won't get a job and I'm a single teenage parent so I can't work. Alongside most of the useless MPs and more than useless Euro MPs. The Royal family are the envy of most other countries who have tinpot dictators or here today and gone tomorrow Presidents who few ever bother to support; or travel to see their none existant pagentry.
No George, the buggers who live of poor peoples, and rich peoples taxes are the rogues, thieves, won't get a job and I'm a single teenage parent so I can't work. Alongside most of the useless MPs and more than useless Euro MPs. The Royal family are the envy of most other countries who have tinpot dictators or here today and gone tomorrow Presidents who few ever bother to support; or travel to see their none existant pagentry. anotherview
  • Score: 0

12:21am Mon 22 Nov 10

wrinkles says...

The royal family are a main UK attraction and help bring in foreign visitors and their money. I don't begrudge the .62pence per annum it costs me. I do begrudge handing over my tax money to people who think I owe them a living.
The royal family are a main UK attraction and help bring in foreign visitors and their money. I don't begrudge the .62pence per annum it costs me. I do begrudge handing over my tax money to people who think I owe them a living. wrinkles
  • Score: 0

6:57pm Mon 22 Nov 10

Jerzei Balowski says...

wrinkles wrote:
The royal family are a main UK attraction and help bring in foreign visitors and their money. I don't begrudge the .62pence per annum it costs me. I do begrudge handing over my tax money to people who think I owe them a living.
More yank tourists visit Paris than London, which proves it's the history that brings them in, not a bunch of freeloaders who are hardly ever seen in public anyway.
[quote][p][bold]wrinkles[/bold] wrote: The royal family are a main UK attraction and help bring in foreign visitors and their money. I don't begrudge the .62pence per annum it costs me. I do begrudge handing over my tax money to people who think I owe them a living.[/p][/quote]More yank tourists visit Paris than London, which proves it's the history that brings them in, not a bunch of freeloaders who are hardly ever seen in public anyway. Jerzei Balowski
  • Score: 0

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