PRINCE Edward visited three towns across East Lancashire today, celebrating the efforts of children and opening two new state-of-the art buildings.

His Royal Highness first visited Burnley Football Club where he saw former Claret's star Jimmy McIlroy presenting 23 youngsters with their bronze Duke of Edinburgh awards.

The Prince then travelled to Nelson where he officially opened Number One, Market Street, which provides a walk-in point of contact for residents who need to deal with Pendle Council.

His final stop was at Accrington new £7.5million primary health care centre named in honour of the Accrington Pals.

The Prince was shown the building's facilities and a display about the town's first world war heroes before unveiling a plaque to officially open the centre.

Burnley is the only football club in the north west to help deliver the Duke of Edinburgh scheme and the children were the first set to receive awards through the project.

Clarets Chairman Barry Kilby said: "We have been overwhelmed with the popularity of the Duke of Edinburgh award programme.

"Not only has it proved a real hit with the kids but it is so important in developing the positive attitudes and confidence for them to really make the most of their lives."

The Earl of Wessex was presented with two personalised Burnley shirts bearing the names of his children Louise and James.

At Nelson, he was met by more than 100 school children waving Union Jack flags.

Ali Hassan, 10, of Lomeshaye Junior School, Nelson, said: "I came here especially to see the Prince.

"He looked very different to what I thought he would. He didn't have very much hair!"

Emily Logan, nine, of St Michael and All Angels CE School, presented the Prince with a DVD copy of the school's Christmas concert.

She said: "He was very nice and I hope he enjoys watching it. We put a lot of effort into the concert."

On the Accrington Pals Primary Health Care Centre, PCT chief executive David Peate said: "We are honoured that our health centre has been given an official Royal opening.

"The idea of naming it after the Pals was chosen to reflect local pride, local identity and local ownership.

"It brings together the concept of providing ultra modern community health provision combined with a great sense of tradition."