27 JULY 2007

It was clearly a poignant moment for the Prince of Wales this week when he arrived at a historic Norfolk church for an evening of music dedicated to his late grandmother, the Queen Mother. Writing in the concert programme, Charles - who was accompanied to the fund-raising event by his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall - said: "This place holds some very precious and cherished memories for me."

The performance of special pieces - including a concerto inspired by a photograph of the Queen Mother taken at Balmoral - took place at the Church of St James the Great in Castle Acre. The Norman-era venue holds special significance, as it was the place where Charles and Queen Mother attended her last ever concert, organised by the Music In Country Churches charity, of which the 58-year-old Prince is patron.

Arriving for the evening's entertainment - which aimed to raise funds to assist with the church's repair and maintenance costs - the heir to the throne and his wife were met by local dignitaries and well-wishers. One of whom, seven-year-old Hayley Shaw, presented the Duchess with a posy of blue blooms which perfectly complemented her blue-themed outfit.

The highlight of the event was a piano concerto performed by renowned Chinese pianist Lang Lang, chosen after the Prince was impressed by his playing at a concert last year. The sounds of the three-part piece were accompanied by images from the life of the late royal matriarch, which were displayed on a giant screen behind the musician.

Photo: ©
With his wife by his side the Prince of Wales arrives for an evening of music dedicated to his grandmother, performed at the historic Norfolk church he says evokes "precious and cherished Photo: © PAClick on photo to enlarge
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