The Duke of Rothesay invited Dounreay workers and community champions to his royal residence in Caithness to thank them for their efforts during the pandemic.
Dounreay Site Restoration Limited (DSRL) operations director Mick Moore was invited to the Castle of Mey alongside representatives from John O’Groats Community Trust, Castletown Community Council Trust and Thurso Community Development Trust.
A combined £200,000 was pledged by DSRL and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) to the Caithness Business Fund which has so far helped 125 local businesses prepare risk assessments, purchase PPE and modify premises following the coronavirus outbreak.
A further £30,000 was given to the North Highland Initiative which offered small grants for projects with an urgent community need.
Dounreay workers also responded to requests for support from NHS Highland, Highland Council and other local organisations.
Portakabin isolation units were installed at medical surgeries, protective screens built for essential facilities and hands-on help given in the laundry at a local care home.
Mr Moore said: “I was delighted that His Royal Highness was aware of the work our team has undertaken and honoured to accept the invitation on behalf of everyone at Dounreay.
“He was very interested to hear how the community has pulled together to support each other during a difficult few months and was appreciative of all that has been done.
“I am proud of everyone involved and know that our team will appreciate His Royal Highness taking the time to recognise their efforts.”
Once the UK’s centre of fast reactor research, Dounreay is now Scotland’s largest decommissioning project.
The site is owned by the NDA – the organisation responsible for decommissioning and cleaning up 17 of the UK’s nuclear sites – and the work is delivered by DSRL, a company owned by the Cavendish Dounreay Partnership.