THE Prince of Wales got to grips with the go-anywhere abilities of the Land Rover Discovery Sport when he took the wheel for an off-road experience at the launch of a new bursary scheme for young farmers.
The latest model in the Land Rover range underwent royal scrutiny when the prince joined trainee farmers in Cumbria and drove through a beck experiencing the techniques of how to drive in water and negotiate a rocky river bed under the guidance of a Land Rover Experience instructor.
The prince was in the Lake District for the launch of the latest phase of The Prince's Countryside Fund Land Rover Bursary Scheme which helps young farmers across the UK.
The bursary seeks to award up to five inspiring young people aged 21 to 35 the use of a Land Rover Discovery Sport for a year to support the development of their countryside careers.
During his visit to the Rookin House Activity Centre near Penrith, the prince joined young farmers in their vehicle training as they developed skills in driving and reversing trailers in and around obstacles, learnt how to check water depth and flow of flooding before carefully driving through the water, and navigated their way around an off-road driving circuit.
Jeremy Hicks, Jaguar Land Rover UK managing director said: "Land Rover is synonymous with the countryside and we're looking for the UK's most enterprising young people who would benefit from the use of a Land Rover Discovery Sport.
"Access to a 4x4 vehicle can be crucial to getting a rural business off the ground. By providing a vehicle with capability to tackle the most challenging of rural terrains, space for seven and excellent towing capacity, we are aiming to help five ambitious young people to further their rural careers."
The visit marked a renewed three-year partnership between The Prince's Countryside Fund and Land Rover.
The fund provides more than £1million in grants every year to projects across the UK that help to provide a secure future for the countryside.
Claire Saunders, director of The Prince's Countryside Fund, said: "There's an acute need for young people to be supported to enter farming and related careers and a multitude of opportunity waiting for them."
She added: "We're delighted to be working in partnership with Land Rover to provide such practical and valuable support to young people starting out in their rural careers."