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Prince Harry in Dagenham as youth centre opens in Parsloes Park

Picture: Prince Harry greeting the Mayor of Barking and Dagenham, alongside the young mayor and local council leader Darren Rodwell.

The Duke of Sussex has visited Dagenham at the launch of a new centre to provide a space for youngsters to socialise.

Prince Harry was greeted by crowds of excited fans at Future Youth Zone in Parsloes Park this afternoon where he met with local children.

The centre, which cost £6.5million, has taken less than 15 months to build.

The Prince arrived alone, as his wife Meghan is currently on maternity leave ahead of the birth of their first child. 

Prince Harry spoke to people as he made his way into the park, before going inside and joining in with some of the activities at the centre, including rugby and table tennis.

There is also a 3g football pitch, skate park and rock climbing wall, as well as art, drama, music, and cookery workshops.

It will cost £1.3million each year to operate the venue, and it will cost just 50p for kids to attend each day.

Jamie O’Dwyer, from Becontree, waited outside Future to see Prince Harry and described him as “wicked.”

The 39-year-old, who campaigns against knife crime, said: “This youth centre is absolutely brilliant. [Prince Harry] is a people’s person, he’s been in the army and he knows what life’s about.”

John Roberts, Chairman of the Executive Board of OnSide Youth Zones said: “It was a pleasure to welcome HRH Duke of Sussex to Future Youth Zone to see the fantastic facility that’s been created.

“We provide state-of-the-art spaces for young people to spend their leisure time which give them somewhere safe and inspiring to make friends and engage with excellent role models. 

“We are extremely grateful for the support we’ve received from local councils, businesses, philanthropists and key members of local communities without which none of this would be possible and we look forward to developing the network across the country.” 

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