A STUDENT from Wirral enjoyed a very important royal date at the palace.
Sophie Hughes lived the high life for a day when she was invited to St James’s Palace to receive her Gold Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) certificate from Prince Edward, who is also a fellow holder.
Sophie completed the award while studying four A levels at West Kirby Grammar School for Girls.
Sophie, 18, from Moreton, said: “Prince Edward chatted to us and our awards were given out by This Morning TV presenter Matt Johnson.
“We were in the main dining room which had gold chandeliers and massive paintings hanging from the walls. It was decorated with royal red and gold wallpaper.
“It was a great day out, I enjoyed meeting people and hearing what activities they did.
“The award was definitely hard to complete but the memories of it were so much fun. I could not have done it without my fellow team as we all brought strengths to support each other.
“It was hard work sticking to it and working through the five sections of DofE programme over 12 months to achieve the Gold award.
“It is a widely recognised certificate which shows drive and commitment. This helped me gain a university place and make my application stand out.
“The award has given me confidence, great friendships and fond memories.
‘‘It was great doing community service and these experiences helped develop the skills needed for life.’’
Sophie added: “I am honoured to have been invited to the palace and it is something I will never experience again.”