Published 15 September 2017

Among her various visits this week, The Countess opened The Isle of Wight College's £11m Centre of Excellence for Composites, Advanced Manufacturing and Marine – which will train 600 students a year.

On Wednesday 13 September, The Countess of Wessex visited the Isle of Wight.

During the day, The Countess was taken on a walk through Shanklin Chine which turns 200 years old this year, and is one of the earliest tourist attractions on the Isle of Wight. The Countess took a walk through the wooded coastal ravine, which is home to beautiful waterfalls, rare plants and wildlife.

The Countess then visited Earl Mountbatten Hospice which has been the Isle of Wight's only hospice for 35 years. Her Royal Highness met staff, patients and families during her tour of the facilities.

Next, The Countess of Wessex visited The Isle of Wight College to open the £11 million Centre of Excellence for Composites, Advanced Manufacturing and Marine.

countess of Wessex at IOW engineering college

The Centre will offer 600 students a year the opportunity to develop specialised skills in classes designed to launch them into jobs in the industry.

Also this week, The Countess attended The launch of Antarctica Ice Maidens: the First all-female British Army team to attempt to cross the Antarctic.

The Countess of Wessex meets the ice maidens 2017

The Ice Maidens consist of six serving British Officers, led by Major Natalie Taylor and Major Nicola Wetherill who are both Army doctors.

The coast-to-coast ski is 1,700km long, with temperatures as low as -50°C to cross Antarctica via the South Pole.