Kingston is now the favourite location for a permanent home for the the Queen’s Row Barge Gloriana.

The royal barge could be berthed in a dock in the Thames-side town's Canbury Gardens by June next year if all goes according to plan.

The new location follows withdrawal of earlier plans for a boathouse in Orleans Park at Twickenham following a protest campaign by local residents.

MyLocalGuardian quotes a letter from Lord Sterling, who commissioned the barge, saying Kingston was now the preferred site.

It says the letter, addressed to council leader Kevin Davis, said: "I confirm that we consider that a permanent boathouse to be built on the site under discussion in the Royal Borough in non tidal waters would be an ideal home for Gloriana.

"At the appropriate time I intend to inform the Palace and for good order’s sake will not be continuing discussions elsewhere.

"I hope the project can proceed at a pace that enables us to meet a deadline of June 2016."

Kingston mayor Ken Smith told the paper: "I think it is wonderful that Gloriana is coming to Kingston. Richmond’s loss is our gain.

“It is going to be something that many people will want to see so it will bring visitors into the town and help businesses."

The owners of the dock NHP Leisure Developments have yet to comment.

Story dated January 26th 2015