In light of the visit, the British Ambassador to Thailand, Mr Brian Davidson, said:
I am delighted to welcome His Royal Highness to the Kingdom of Thailand, and I very much look forward to showing him some of the great successes of UK business in the Kingdom. The Duke will also attend a memorial service to mark the 75th anniversary of the completion of the Burma-Thailand railway. His Royal Highness’ visit demonstrates the importance of the UK/Thailand relationship, and our commitment to further strengthen the ties between our countries.
On his first day in Bangkok, The Duke will tour the Jim Thompson House - the famous Bangkok residence and art collection of the ‘Thai Silk King’.
In Chonburi, His Royal Highness will have the opportunity to tour the Triumph Motorcycles Factory and Senior Aerospace Factory. Both companies are British owned and employ hundreds of staff in Thailand.
The Duke will visit the Habitat for Humanity (HFHT) centre in Kanchanaburi. HFHT aims to improve the quality of life for low-income Thai people by building homes and transforming communities. His Royal Highness is a Patron of Habitat for Humanity in the UK.
To mark the 75th Anniversary of the completion of the Thai-Burma railway, The Duke will attend a remembrance service for the Commonwealth servicemen and women who gave their lives in the construction of the railway. He will also see the well-known Bridge over the River Kwai and tour its museum.
In Chiang Mai, His Royal Highness will visit the Royal Project Foundation Centre where he will learn more about the sustainable projects founded by His Majesty The Late King Bhumibol Adulyadej. The Royal Project has always had close connections with the UK, in particular Kew Gardens, and provides excellent examples of sustainable development.
The Duke will also visit the Children’s Advocacy Centre Thailand: a notable Thai government initiative that joins international NGOs and Thailand’s police units to combat child abuse, exploitation of children and human trafficking; and Care for Children in Chiang Mai. Care for Children aims to help create a positive alternative to institutional care through local family-based care for disadvantaged children.
On his final night in Thailand, The Duke will be the guest of honour at a charity dinner hosted at the British Ambassador’s Residence. The menu will be curated by Michelin-starred chef Ken Hom, who will also be in attendance. This event is held in partnership with the Siam Piwat Group. All proceeds from the dinner will be presented to Habitat for Humanity in Thailand.
The Duke of Gloucester is a grandson of King George V and a first cousin to The Queen. He is the second son of the late Duke of Gloucester and the late Princess Alice, Duchess of Gloucester. He is a full-time working member of the British Royal Family, attending national and international events in support of The Queen and her duties as Head of State. The Duke is associated with over 150 charities and his patronages reflect his personal and professional interests, which include international humanitarian issues, heritage and the environment and military veterans.
Triumph Motorcycles (Thailand) Limited currently operate 3 factories in Chonburi. Triumph’s first factory in Thailand was opened in May 2002 and was established for the manufacture of motorcycle components including Frames, Fuel Tanks, Header Systems, Swinging Arms, Engine Covers and Chrome Plated Parts. A second factory was opened in 2006 where a wet painting facility has been established. A third factory, opened in 2007, includes high pressure die casting, machining, engines and motorcycles assembly lines.
Senior Aerospace (Thailand) Limited are one of the largest aerospace components manufacturer in Thailand. They are principally a manufacturer of aerofoils, aluminium and hard metal structural parts and premium aircraft-seat structure.
Habitat for Humanity have built, repaired and rehabilitated over 11,500 homes and helped over 46,000 people across Thailand. This also boosts families’ economic and education opportunities and improves health and social integration.
The Children’s Advocacy Centre also offers care to victims, including access to counsellors or lawyers, after school programmes and basics such as food. It is the first of its type in Southeast Asia.
Ken Hom is an American chef, author and television show presenter for the BBC. In 2009, he was appointed honorary Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to culinary arts. Ken Hom’s restaurant, MEE, located in Brazil was awarded one Michelin star in 2015 and retained its rating since. He is widely regarded as one of the world’s greatest authorities on oriental cooking. Between 2008 and 2013, he launched the Maison Chin, in Bangkok, where it became known as ‘the best new modern Asian cuisine’ restaurant and won awards.