HER Royal Highness the Duchess of Gloucester visits Taunton Deane on Thursday (May 17) in a whistlestop tour of the district.

She will be returning for the first time since opening the Duchess Building at Musgrove Park Hospital in 1995.

Her visit takes in three venues starting at lunchtime. First the Duchess will open the new cardiac catheterisation laboratory at Taunton's Musgrove Park Hospital and visit the neo-natal unit.

She will unveil a plaque and meet health officials. Then as patron of blind charity seeAbility, she makes a trip to Wellington where she will officially open seeAbility's Fiennes House and Bill Drake Activity and Resource Centre at Drakes Park North.

Security will remain low-profile but guests to visits are by invite only.