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Royal no show at Yarmouth concert

PUBLISHED: 09:34 05 February 2009 | UPDATED: 12:56 03 July 2010

A forecast of poor weather last night left the Yarmouth Hippodrome still waiting to receive its first royal visitor.

The Duke of Kent had been expected to be the star guest at a sell out concert by the Moscow State Philharmonic Orchestra and cellist Julian Lloyd-Webber.

A forecast of poor weather last night left the Yarmouth Hippodrome still waiting to receive its first royal visitor.

The Duke of Kent had been expected to be the star guest at a sell out concert by the Moscow State Philharmonic Orchestra and cellist Julian Lloyd-Webber.

However, as the boss of the Hippodrome Peter Jay waited to greet the Duke outside the news was relayed to him that he had to leave Yarmouth early in his helicopter because of concerns over the weather.

Mr Jay said: “Literally two minutes before his expected arrival his secretary passed his apologies to us, I thought it might be a gag to begin with. It's a disappointment but the show must go on and the Hippodrome will have to wait a little longer for its first Royal visit.”

Compere for the evening, former Radio Norfolk presenter Tony Mallion announced the Duke's absence to a packed audience.

Mr Jay said he had been told the Duke had been looking forward to seeing the 105-year-old Hippodrome and the concert.

Joe Macintosh, director of the town's SeaChange Arts, which hosted the event as one of a series of high-profile concerts at the Hippodrome and sent the invitation to the Duke, said the venue's fine acoustics and closeness of the players to the audience made it “a real evening to remember”.

Earlier in the afternoon the Duke had flown into the town's North Denes Heliport and paid his first visit to the Yarmouth and Gorleston lifeboat station in his capacity as president of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

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