A new children's home is to be officially opened by royalty.

Prince Edward's wife -- Sophie, The Countess of Wessex -- will perform the ceremony at the Sky View House residential home, in East Morton, this month.

The new purpose-built home houses eight children at a time, aged from 10 to 18, who are looked after by Bradford Social Services.

Kath Tunstall, Bradford Council's head of children's services, said: "I am absolutely delighted that Her Royal Highness has found time in her schedule to help us celebrate this fantastic local facility for the district's children."

The home was designed by council architects, with help from some of the district's children in care.

It is already occupied, but will be officially opened by the Countess on October 18.

It is the fourth of five homes being built across the district as part of a project costing £3.8 million. Other homes are based in Thornton, Allerton and Shipley and the final home in Low Moor is expected to be completed later this year.

As well as helping with the design, the children also chose the name of each new building.

A council spokes-man said: "The homes are as close to a family home as we can make them. It's a very cost-effective way of providing care and the best way of doing it. It's very important for the youngsters as it provides stability and support for them."

Sky View House includes a homework/computing room and a chill-out room, as well as kitchen, bathrooms and bedrooms.

The Countess, born Sophie Rhys Jones, was invited to open the home because she is patron of several children's charities.

She married Prince Edward in June, 1999, and later gave up her career as a public relations executive. She had an ectopic pregnancy in 2001 which left her seriously ill, but she gave birth to a daughter last November.