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Royal visit for school



Their majesties King Letsie III and Queen Masenate Mohato Seeiso met with children and staff of The Venerable Bede CofE Academy on Friday.

The pair made the visit with The Right Reverend Paul Butler, the Bishop of Durham, as part of a trip to the region to celebrate 30 years of the Durham Diocese and Lesotho link.

The royal party visited a range of locations during the three-day visit, including the Tunstall Bank School in Sunderland, which regularly takes part in link activities.

While on Wearside the group also went along to the National Glass Centre.

Other places visited during the tour of the area were Durham County Cricket Club, East Durham College’s Houghall Campus and the UTASS, Upper Teesdale Agricultural Support Service, recognising the King’s interest in farming.

There will also be a service of celebration in Chester-le-Street to mark 30 years of Durham Lesotho Link, which is a registered charity.

Reverend Margaret Bianchi, executive director of the Durham-Lesotho Link, said: “I am delighted that their royal highnesses have been able to accept Bishop Paul’s invitation and be with us to celebrate 30 years of the Link.

“The King has often attended significant Link events in Lesotho. He is also patron of the Lesotho Royal Lifesaving Society which the Link set up, so it is fantastic that he is able to be here and for us to show him around the diocese taking in places and areas of mutual interest.

“The Link is important because of its long-term commitment to Lesotho, particularly working with the youth and vulnerable people.

“It models a realistic style of sustainability and, through the partnership, enables people in Durham to gain an understanding of developing world issues.”

The Durham Lesotho LINK was established in 1986 as a partnership between the two dioceses of Lesotho and Durham, with a strong developmental element at its heart.-sunderlandecho.com


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