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The Prince of Wales celebrates the 15th anniversary of The Prince's Regeneration Trust

20th June 2012

The Prince of Wales celebrates the 15th anniversary of The Prince's Regeneration Trust

The Prince of Wales talks to chief Gary Hollihead (right) as he points at cheese during a reception to mark the The Prince's Regeneration Trust's 15th anniversary at The Corinthia Hotel, London.

The Prince of Wales marked the 15th anniversary of his charity The Prince's Regeneration Trust this evening.

Speaking at the Corinthia Hotel in central London, The Prince said that some of the almost 70 projects completed by the PRT, which have created more than 1,000 jobs and attracted £100 million in investment, were "written in blood on my heart".

He added: "I hope there will be a worthwhile legacy remaining after we have all gone, and perhaps also an example of what you can do to bring many of these great buildings back to life for the benefit of local people.

He added that he hoped the charity would act as a stimulus for other similar bodies to follow its lead, despite the economic problems affecting the country.

The Prince is well-known as a champion of traditional architectural styles over modernist designs and has tried to implement his ideas in his model village, Poundbury, on the edge of Dorchester in Dorset.

His Royal Highness marked the charity's birthday by cutting into a cake specially made by the hotel's executive chef, Garry Hollihead, in the shape of Stanley Mills in Perth, Scotland, which was the first regeneration project the charity undertook. This vast complex of cotton mills long-term dereliction sat alongside wider industrial and economic decline of the area and the Trust rescued it and developed into affordable contemporary accommodation to benefit the local community. His Royal Highness opened the site in 2000.  

The Corinthia Hotel, where The Prince spoke, is the former Metropole Building. It was built as a hotel in 1885 and was also used by the Ministry of Defence before falling derelict. After being renovated last year it is now an upmarket hotel.

In fifteen years, the PRT's projects have attracted over £100m investment, restored over 1m sq ft of redundant historic floor space and directly created over a 1,000 jobs.

Ros Kerslake, Chief Executive of The Prince’s Regeneration Trust said: “We are delighted to welcome project partners, ambassadors, funders, supporters and past and present staff to enjoy this reception. We believe that many of our abandoned historic sites have real potential to be developed into vibrant, relevant and accessible community spaces.  We have been involved in nearly 70 projects over the last fifteen years, from Cornish palaces to rollercoasters to vast industrial mills. We have taken on the challenge for securing the future of some of the most difficult historic sites in areas of profound dereliction ”“ and we have succeeded.”