A YOUNG people's charity has gained royal recognition after it was handed a prestigious award by Prince Andrew for its operations in the region.

North Yorkshire Youth, based at the Carlton Lodge Activity Centre near Thirsk, won the Duke of York’s ‘Community Initiative Award’ for 2018.

The team met the duke at the awards ceremony, which was held at Catterick Garrison.

David Sharp, chief executive of North Yorkshire Youth, said: “This is excellent news and recognition for our team here at Carlton Lodge who work every day to make the lives of young people better."

The Northern Echo:

The Duke of York with chief executive David Sharp

The charity, which runs the Carlton Lodge Activity Centre at Carlton Miniott, which was founded in 1970, takes in around 6,000 young guests each year.

The centre mainly provides a range of outdoor events for people from schools and colleges from across the country.

Mr Sharp added: "We really enjoyed meeting the Duke of York at the prestigious awards ceremony.”

Prince Andrew, who has active roles within a range of charities, is currently patron of the eye disease prevention charity, Fight for Sight, and more recently founded The Prince Andrew Charitable Trust.

In October 2018, Hambleton District Council awarded a grant to North Yorkshire Youth to aid with their activity centre refurbishment and renewal plans.

The grant came from the council’s Making a Difference fund, which allowed charity staff, the chance to replace some of its mattresses, duvets and pillows, which have been worn from years of use.

At the time, Mr Sharp said: "Replacing these everyday items is important for our young visitors' welfare."

Last year, the charity also encouraged people aged 14 to 25 to sign up to its team of volunteers from across Thirsk and surrounding areas.

The charity said the volunteers would be able to help with its 'Bunkhouse' in need of a 'much-needed' facelift.

Mr Sharp added that the recognition from the Duke of York will aid the charity's credibility with its marketing and communications for the next several years.