HRH The Prince of Wales visited The Old Crown for the first time in February 2004, having learned about the cooperative buy-out of the pub through Pub is the Hub, an organisation which he launched in 2001.
On this first visit HRH made a speech in which he expressed his admiration and delight at what we had all achieved together and unveiled a plaque before being whisked away in a shiny black Mercedes. Whilst in the very crowded pub, Prince Charles was treated (as we know, he doesn’t carry any cash!) to a glass of Doris’ 90th, which judging from the photos went down very well.
There was a sharp frost on the ground when Prince Charles visited Hesket Newmarket for the second time nearly three years later, in February 2007. On this occasion, he first visited The Old Crown where he unveiled another commemorative plaque before touring Hesket Newmarket Brewery and Fellside Stores and enjoying a relaxed and informal walkabout the village, meeting and chatting with villagers.
On his return to The Old Crown he hosted a meeting to discuss community initiatives, after which he amused the gathered press by choosing a pint of ‘Great Cockup’ porter before joining the then landlady in a game of darts – which he and his darts partner Sal won fairly and squarely. The score board from that game has been preserved for posterity in the Pool Room at The Old Crown.