This week saw the Borough receive HRH Prince Charles and HRH the Duchess of Cornwall when they visited a special service at Jesus House. It was my first meeting with a Royal and of course had to be briefed on using HRH then Sir or Ma’am (as in ham).

Jesus House is a very vibrant, successful church near to Brent Cross. The church is the heart of their operation but they also provide an amazing array of other services, youth outreach, homework clubs, crèche and marriage counselling. All offered quietly and efficiently.

Prince Charles asked to visit as his Princes’ Trust is investigating some of the work the black churches are undertaking in addressing family breakdown and disaffected youth.

After a through tour of the church complex and a meeting with the church leaders, TRH joined the rest of the throng for the main service. The powerful oratory of the Pastors coupled with the amazing voices (better than many winners of X-Factor) of the choir and the soloists meant no-one could leave without their spirits being uplifted.

The most interesting aspect of the event was the warmth of the reception from the congregation (some 900 strong). It wasn’t just the skilful speech Prince Charles made – I don’t know if he was just well briefed but the speech clearly reflected his own observations on the visit and his own faith. Whether his own passion or good advice – the speech pressed all the right buttons. He came across as very warm, compassionate and very human. The speech, perhaps only 6 minutes long, was rapturously received.

Then it was all over and off he went to a standing ovation and cheers. So if people think Prince Charles becoming King will hasten a republic, they’d better think again. The ‘Firm’ is alive and well – long live the ‘Firm’