Page last updated at 20:12 GMT, Wednesday, 25 June 2008 21:12 UK

Royal couple welcome neighbours

Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall
The royal couple welcomed their new neighbours on Wednesday evening

Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall have thrown open the doors of their Welsh home to welcome neighbours and those who refurbished it.

More than 100 guests were invited for canapes and wine in what used to be one of the agricultural barns at Llwynywermod, near Llandovery.

The hosts did not have to go far to greet the guests as the barn forms part of a courtyard adjoining their home.

The Duchy of Cornwall bought the Carmarthenshire estate in 2006.

Since then it has been given a major makeover.

One of those involved in the refurbishment was carpenter Tony Smith, who worked on the roof, stairs and doors.

He said: "If you go back a couple of months it was in a bit of a state really but it's come along really good.

The Duchess of Cornwall
The Duchess of Cornwall leaving Myddfai village hall after a reception with the Women's Institute

"The architect has said he [the prince] is pleased with it. It's not very often you are involved in a project like this and the end product is very satisfying."

On being invited to the royal function he said: "A night like tonight is something I will always treasure and remember for the rest of my life."

The evening was an informal occasion and the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall mingled casually with their guests.

This is the first week they have stayed at the estate which they bought as a base for their annual summer visits to Wales.

Also among the guests was local vicar Father Roy Doxsey.

He said: "It's great that he wants to meet the local people and is not hiding away up here. It's the first time most of us have seen it [Llwynywermod]. It's superb and it's really something for the area.

"In one way we are hidden away in Myddfai [the neighbouring village] and we like that but it's nice that he has come here and I'm sure he will enjoy the area.

"I think he will be coming here all the time now because the valley is not just peaceful here, it's so tranquil."

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