Duke and Duchess of Cambridge help out with sheep shearing in Cumbria

June 11, 2019

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge delighted farmers by helping out with sheep shearing while on a visit to Cumbria. 

The royal couple got stuck in at the Deepdale Hall Farm in Patterdale, owned by the Brown family, and appeared relaxed as they met members of the Cumbrian farming community.

William and Kate even picked up a pair of shears and tended to the farm's flock of Herdwick and Swaledale sheep.

They also joined the Brown family, who have been farming in the valley near Lake Ullswater since the 1950s, and other local farmers for a discussion around the kitchen table.

The duke and duchess were told by one farmer that he feared a no-deal Brexit would harm his trade.

Sam Rawling, who farms in the western Lake District, told Sky News that he didn't understand why other farmers voted for Brexit.

During the royal visit, he told Prince William he felt it was "like turkeys voting for Christmas".

"If we lose our support payments from Europe and we have a loss of our export market... we'll see a massive reduction in farm income. It's potentially a big problem," he said.

"We want to tell our story and who better to tell it to than a future king?"

The royal visit to Cumbria began in the town of Keswick, where cheering crowds greeted the pair and waved British flags.

After sampling local cheese from market stalls, the duke and duchess spent an hour speaking to charity workers and responders from the Keswick Mountain Rescue Team.

The pair also met an excited English springer spaniel named Prince Harry, along with his owner Kerry Irving.

Mr Irving uses his three dogs to help others get outdoors and fight depression, and met the royal couple last month at a Buckingham Palace garden party with his therapy dog, Max.

"I said, 'This is Paddy, obviously that's Max, and this one's Prince Harry, and he (William) laughed, he said, 'Oh yes, I remember you telling us about that'.

"The nicest thing was they actually remembered us from being in the Palace, they remembered Max.

"He said just flying over today, when they were coming in and they flew over the lakes, 'To see everybody out on their boats, their dinghies, their kayaks and things, people outdoors, it's great work you do, getting people outside'."

Cumbria is home to the Lake District - a UNESCO World Heritage site - and also to England's largest lake, Windermere, and its highest mountain, Scafell Pike.

Tourism, farming and agriculture are key to the county's economy, and farmers have worked on the land for centuries.

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