Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

HRH Sophie, The Countess of Wessex delighted dignitary’s, visitors and volunteers at Aspire Ryde last week.

Scroll down for gallery

After being formally welcomed by C.E.O. Heath Monaghan, and co-founder Julie Monaghan Her Royal Highness met trustees and patrons, before stopping to enjoy a dancing display.

While visiting she also chatted to participants in the centre’s men-in-sheds wood workshop and cycle workshop, and took the time to learn more about Aspire’s free food and community fridge project.

Heath Monaghan said:

“We are thrilled that she has taken the time to visit us as this really recognises the hard work and dedication taken by the whole community to transform this much loved redundant church building into a thriving community hub. We were delighted last year when awarded the queens award for voluntary service that is the equivalent of an MBE for the team. However to also get a royal visit really does show the royal family’s interest in the Island and she said such nice things about what we had achieved. It was an absolute pleasure to escort HRH around our project and she was very complimentary about everything going on. She really was genuinely interested in understanding more about the difference that we make.”

1. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Heath Monaghan, Julie Monaghan and Isle of Wight High Sheriff Gioia Minghella-Giddens. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

2. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde CEO Keith Monaghan greeting HRH The Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

3. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Co-Founder Julie Monaghan greeting HRH The Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

4. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

5. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

6. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

7. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

8. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

9. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

10. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

11. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

12. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

13. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

14. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

15. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

16. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

17. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

18. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography

19. Countess of Wessex visits Aspire Ryde

Aspire Ryde Visit of HRH Countess of Wessex. Copyright Graham Reading Photography