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  1. ITV Report

A Royal visit for a Gloucestershire pub bucking the trend

Prince Charles tries the locally produced beer Photo: ITV News

Pubs are closing at an alarming rate in our region but there are places that are bucking the depressing trend and The Fleece Inn at Hillesley, close to Wotton-under-Edge in Gloucestershire, is one such place.

Today it received a very special visitor, to find out what it's secret to success is - it was no other than the Prince of Wales himself.

Prince Charles trying his hand at pulling pints Credit: ITV News

Prince Charles was there to unveil a plaque to mark the reopening of the pub after it was bought by the local community four years ago with the help of the organisation called 'The Pub is the Hub', of which Prince Charles is patron.

Experienced landlords were brought in to run it after local people struggled.

"They've still got their pub, they own Hillesley Community Pub, own the building, we own the business and the fixtures and fittings and we run it in harmony with each other and it's great. We just get on and do our job, risk our capital rather than theirs and it's a great success."

– ROD UNDY, Landlord

"It has character, it has friendliness, it has a welcome from everybody that works here that makes it a place that you want to go, you want to come and support and enjoy conversation and great drinks."

– GARETH MACDONALD, Campaign for real ale
Schoolchildren sang to the prince outside the pub Credit: ITV News

Earlier when Prince Charles arrived children from the village's only primary school sang to him. They had great things to say about him such as "he's quite handsome".

The pub has been in the village since the 17th century and is now the only one left open in the parish.

Prince Charles' darts won't win prizes but he gave it a go Credit: ITV News

It was a visit that combined many of Prince Charles' likes. Locally made produce - the beer - and an unfussy, friendly atmosphere devoid of pool tables and juke boxes. His darts won't win any prizes, but the locals approve of his choice of hostelries.