The Duke of Edinburgh isn’t the person you would expect to see when you look up from your Full English Breakfast at a motorway café, but that is exactly who staff and customers at one Little Chef in Doncaster did see.
While en route to a carriage driving event Prince Philip, along with security and other staff, stopped at the Doncaster branch of Little Chef on the A1 although it appears that Philip wasn’t there for any food or drink, he just wanted to stretch his legs. Manager of the branch Celia Morrell has commented that one of her staff asked the Duke if he wanted a table but he politely refused as he was just stretching his legs while his staff bought coffee and snacks.
Ms Morrell added, “It was really exciting and also an honour that they’d picked our Little Chef to come and visit. Prince Philip was wandering around and one of the girls went up to him and asked him if he would like a table. She is only a young girl and didn’t realise who he was. The security people were buying drinks and chocolates.”
It was reported that the Duke was on his way to a carriage driving event in Cumbria when the Little Chef incident occurred last Thursday and it is thought that the Duke and his entourage arrived between 11:30am and 12 noon. One wonders though that while Prince Philip was at the roadside café, he didn’t opt for their very apt Royal Breakfast: at £10.99 it is the chain’s standard Olympic breakfast topped off with a 6oz sirloin steak, a breakfast fit for any member of the Royal Family.
Ms Morrell added that the girl who spoke to Philip did not realise who he was until after she had spoken to him, “I said to her ‘do you realise who that was’ and she was amazed when I told her. There were lots of customers here at the time and some of them were getting really excited. It was a real honour to have him here.”
It can be assumed, and Ms Morrell agrees, that some of the drinks and snacks that the Duke’s staff bought could have been for the Duke himself although just which of the items were Philip’s, we can only speculate.
There is a lesson to be learnt from Philip’s visit to Little Chef and it’s this: never be so engrossed in what you are eating that you don’t look up from your food, you never know which Royal is at your roadside restaurant standing at the counter ordering bacon and eggs. I am 100% certain it won’t be The Queen though, sorry!