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Royal seal of approval for Shropshire pie

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Prince William and Kate Middleton have given their royal seal of approval to a giant pork pie cooked at a Shropshire shop - as a British brewery announced that it is creating a unique drink to mark their wedding.

Prince William and Kate Middleton have given their royal seal of approval to a giant pork pie cooked at a Shropshire shop - as a British brewery announced that it is creating a unique drink to mark their wedding.

Eley's Pie Shop in Ironbridge received a letter from Prince William and Miss Middleton last week to say thanks for sending the 20-inch-wide pie as a wedding gift.

And Nottingham's Castle Rock Brewery has announced it is creating a drink to mark the wedding on April 29.

The official letter to Eley's from Claudia Holloway, at St James's Palace, said: "The Prince and Miss Middleton very much appreciated your incredibly kind thought, and were so touched that you took the trouble to send a gift.

"They have asked me to thank you and all the staff at Eley's most sincerely for the wonderful pork pie, which you so generously sent to mark the occasion of their wedding."

Shop owner Richard Eley said his five members of staff were "absolutely thrilled" with the response.

Mr Eley said: "It's definitely the biggest pie we've ever done, being about 4lbs in weight, 20 inches in diameter and five inches deep.

"They will be able to feed the whole family and I would be surprised if the Queen and Prince Charles could resist having a bite too.

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"I have a sneaking suspicion that Prince William will have had a small slice already as we know he's a big fan of locally-sourced food."

The crust of the gut-busting treat is engraved with royal blue pastry letters, saying Congratulations William and Kate 2011.

An exact replica of the royal pie will be auctioned at the shop this year, with all proceeds going to the Royal British Legion and Help for Heroes charities.

Castle Rock Brewery announced its plans to make Kiss Me Kate beer, brewed just for the occasion, describing the drink as "elegant, tasteful and British to the core".

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Head brewer Adrian Redgrove said: "The recipe is still in the planning stage. I have to give this one very careful thought because it's obviously a very special beer.

"We're sure it'll be the ideal way to toast the couple's future happiness. We'll certainly be enjoying it in our celebrations here at the brewery."

By Danny Carden

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