The Duke of Cambridge speaks to owners Paul and Teresa Brandon during a visit to Smiths the Bakers, in the High Street in King's Lynn, Norfolk. PA Photo. Picture date: Friday June 19, 2020. Photo credit Aaron Chown/PA Wire

The Duke of Cambridge showed his support for an independent bakery which was hit hard due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Prince William visited Smiths the Bakers in the town’s High Street just days after it had re-opened after a 12-week closure.

Owner Paul Brandon said: “The Duke wanted to know about the difficulties we faced during the lockdown.

“He asked about the staff and spoke to two members of staff privately. It was a honour and a privilege to meet the Duke, the visit went really well.”

Mr Brandon and his wife Teresa told the Duke how the family-run business, which has held a Royal Warrant for 30 years, had to furlough 13 members of staff.

“It was a scary first four to five weeks as we had to wait for the furlough money to come through and we saw a sudden drop in its wholesale trade by 80 per cent,” said Mr Brandon.

During last Friday’s visit, the owners presented the Duke with a football-themed cake for his 38th birthday two days later.

The Duke also showed the importance of supporting local businesses and took home pain au chocolat and croissants. 

 “During lockdown there was a lot of support for small independent shops, we hope that continues, it’s so important,” said Mr Brandon.