Tippling, sniffing and shopping were all part of a walkabout for the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall at Sandringham Flower Show.
Their 100-minute schedule on Wednesday also included meeting exhibitors, chatting with crowds that lined their path, patting dogs, posing for the occasional picture and accepting flowers and gifts..
Flowers and plants for their gardens were on the royal shopping list along with cakes, strawberries and a hamper of preserves to take home and a delightful crocheted toy elephant costing £10 and maybe heading for Anmer Hall and Princess Charlotte.
The toy had been made by Sandringham WI vicechairman Ann Whiting and immediately caught the eye of Camilla whose late brother ran an elephant sanctuary.
The Women’s Institute marquee also staged raffles for prizes donated by the Queen and Prince Charles.
The couple admired a new pink fragrant shrub rose called Sandringham which was launched at Chelsea Flower Show this year by Norfolk’s Peter Beales Roses.
Garden centre Notcutts made space on its stand for the Happy and Glorious pub and invited Charles and Camilla to sample a new pale ale launched by Adnams Brewery to celebrate the Queen’s 90th birthday, and Prince Charles joked about whether it was too early in the day but he and the duchess raised glasses and sipped the new brew.
There was more laughter in the schools marquee where the couple were highly amused – and impressed – by caricature busts of members of the Royal Family created by Flitcham schoolchildren using balloons and papier mache.
One of the models created by the children was of Prince Harry. “The bust would look the same upside down,” the Prince laughed.
In the flower marquee it was a special day for 10-year-old Bob Sharey who travelled from America with his mum to help on the family plant stand.
His dream to meet the ‘prince of England’ came true when the Royal couple posed with him for family pictures.
Charles and Camilla arrived in open carriage drawn by two grey horses and within minutes dull damp skies changed to glorious sunshine and set the scene for the rest of the show and its 20,000 visitors.
Show chairman, David Reeve, described it as “an informal, beautiful occasion”.
He said: “The affection for the royals is palpable and the welcome from the crowds exceeds even the warmth of the sun.”
As well as the show marquees, the park was lined with trade and charity stands, there were gundog trials and several hours of entertainment in the main area.