THE Duke of York helped factory workers celebrate the official opening of a Chesterfield business.
Cathelco Ltd was given the royal seal of approval by Prince Andrew on Tuesday as the UK’s former trade envoy, praised British manufacturing.
The Lord-Lieutenant of Derbyshire, William Tucker, Chesterfield Mayor Donald Parsons and his wife Diane joined the celebrations at the site on Dunston Road,
The Duke, who served for 22 years in the Royal Navy, was impressed by the factory’s products, which are used by ships throughout the world.
Richard Woolley, publicity manager at Cathelco, said: “We were very impressed with his knowledge of our products and he asked some very pertinent questions.”
He added: “He spent a lot of time talking to employees in the shop floor and in the office and made time to talk to people personally.”
The family owned business maintains a 95 per cent export record for its marine engineering products.
With a distinctive wave-like roof and ship’s propeller mounted at the entrance, the factory has become a landmark on the main road between Chesterfield and Sheffield.
The company moved into the new premises in 2009.
Managing director Justin Salisbury said: “We are delighted that HRH the Duke of York officially opened the factory.
“He is a royal ambassador for British products around the world.”