Victoria Cross hero Johnson Beharry has said the royal family are “embracing the Commonwealth” as Britain moves closer towards Brexit.
Sergeant Beharry, who was awarded Britain’s highest military honour for twice saving colleagues while under fire in Iraq, suggested Charles, a future head of the Commonwealth, was helping to revive the institution which he said many had forgotten.
The soldier’s comments came during a whirlwind tour of Grenada by the prince and duchess who celebrated local food producers, indulged themselves at a chocolate company and ended their day by taking a stroll on the beach.
Grenada-born Sgt Beharry met Charles when he visited the country’s new parliament building for talks with prime minister Keith Mitchell.
Asked about the meeting, Sgt Beharry said: “As you say his name I keep getting goosebumps. I never thought in history I would be in Grenada with his royal highness at the same time.”
The VC recipient, of the 1st Battalion, Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment, highlighted the importance of Harry’s 2016 trip to Grenada and now his father’s visit.
He added: “First we have Prince Harry and now with have His Royal Highness Prince Charles, I cannot really put it together in words how important it is to have the royal family visiting Grenada.
“With what’s going on with Brexit and everything else, to build a relationship with the Commonwealth, to show that there is a Commonwealth and to see the royal family’s actually embracing the Commonwealth – more or less recreating back the Foreign and Commonwealth.
“Because for years there was the word Commonwealth and no one knew, even myself, what it meant because there was no relationship and I know the reason why.
“Now is very important to raise the profile of the Commonwealth and bring the whole of the Commonwealth back together and the UK is showing… support to the Commonwealth.”
The prince and Duchess of Cornwall have already visited St Lucia, Barbados, St Kitts and Nevis and St Vincent and the Grenadines during a busy tour at the request of the British Government which is aimed at strengthening ties with the Commonwealth nations.
The heir to the throne and his wife went for a stroll on the sands of Grand Anse Beach before leaving Grenada and the duchess told a family sat on sun loungers “you’re just in the right place”.
Camilla had kicked off her shoes revealing the pink nail polish on her toes as she shared the brief private time with her husband.
The prince had left a private blue economy roundtable event discussing plans for the stewardship of the waters of the West Indies to join his wife.
Earlier, the heir to the throne had emulated Charlie in the chocolate factory when the couple visited House of Chocolate, a company famed for the sweet treats it produces.
An array of chocolates were laid out for them to taste with Charles preferring a spice flavoured sample while his wife liked bee pollen.
When they left the business in the heart of the capital St George’s they received a colourful welcome with the streets lined with young women in traditional dress, performing stilt walkers and a steel pan band playing.
They made their way to the waterfront to see a display of local produce and spices as Grenada is known as the spice island and exhibitors were showing innovative ways to use products like nutmeg to find a new market for their goods.