THE Duke of Gloucester Prince Richard marked a significant day in Godmanchester’s 800-year chartered history by officially unveiling the new town sign.

He revealed the sign at The Causeway in front of more than 200 people, including children from St Anne's and Godmanchester Community Primary Schools.

Prince Richard toured the town on Thursday, visiting St Mary's Church where he was presented with flowers by nine-year-old Madeleine Oliver and met several group leaders.

The Duke showed significant interest in a display by Godmanchester in Bloom, which was celebrating its first gold award two days earlier.

The Prince went to the town hall, where he was presented with a basket of flowers from St Anne's youngest Year 1 pupil Summer Wood, five, and the Celebration of 800 Years book written by Dr Ken and Pam Senath.

Prince Richard, who last visited the town in 2003 to mark the 400th anniversary of King James I incorporating the town as a free borough, said: "It is a great honour to help you celebrate your 800th year.

"The sign will give this town an extra sense of history to see it symbolised and give the town much pride.

"It will also make strangers to the town realise that you are very proud of your town."

Godmanchester mayor Councillor Christopher Vane Percy introduced the Duke to 80 townspeople during the 90-minute visit.

He said: "It has been a perfect day. We were told that we wouldn't manage for Prince Richard to meet 80 people but we did it and, at the end of the day, we had time to spare for a drink.

"I am really proud of the town and thank the community for organising a year-long programme of events for our 800th year."