Prince William visited Newquay’s community garden on Thursday for his first official visit to the Duchy as the Duke of Cornwall.

He was given a tour of Newquay Orchard, which sits on Duchy of Cornwall land, to see the eight years of hard work and dedication that has gone in to creating the seven-acre urban greenspace.

He heard how the Orchard works with more than 120 volunteers each week on a variety of initiatives, which aim to combat social isolation, promote healthy lifestyles and support those who are feeling the impacts of the cost of living crisis.

Prince William’s first stop was along the Espalier, a walkway lined with apple trees, where he was greeted with cheers, drawings and ukulele tunes from the team from Imagine Outdoors.

Imagine Outdoors provides bushcraft activities and fun opportunities for outdoor learning for children, young people and families at Newquay Orchard, and were one of the original business members to call the Orchard home.

Founder Matt Lewry said: “The kids were so excited to say hello and did themselves proud.

“We work with children from all backgrounds and with different needs but in that moment they were all one gang, laughing and joking with a Prince.

“I don’t think they’ll ever forget that.”

The Duke was given a tour of the Orchard’s grow spaces, including a polytunnel,the market garden and An Lowarth, a community garden tended by volunteers.

It was there that Prince William was introduced to students including Lilly Dickinson, who confidently asked for a photo, and Jess, who graduated from the Orchard’s Growing Futures programme of study earlier this year and is now proudly an ambassador and volunteer.

Jess said: “It’s not every day a Prince visits Newquay and I am so happy I got to shake his hand. I love this place and I love showing it off!”

The Duke visited an educational area where people are trained in cooking, gardening and other practical skills to help them move into employment, education or further training.

Finally, the royal visitor visited the community café, Canteen at the Orchard, where the core ethos is sustainability. It serves produce grown and picked by volunteers in the gardens.

Prince William left with the gift of an apple ornament made by a 3D printer in the Orchard’s creative hub, Kreft, which has the largest commercially available 3D printer in Cornwall.

Newquay Orchard founder and chief executive Luke Berkeley said the occasion was all about “celebration and recognition of the immense efforts of our family of volunteers”.

He said: “The Duchy have been supportive of our vision since day one and have shared in our journey through visits, reports and updates throughout.

“This visit was about marking what has been a monumental year for the project and sharing in our excitement for the future with the new Duke of Cornwall – who was delighted to hear all about it.”