The bells of Westminster Abbey will toll this evening to mark The Princess Royal’s birthday, as she turns 66-years-old today.
Princess Anne was born on August 15th 1950 and was The Queen & Duke of Edinburgh’s second child and only daughter.
The twelfth-in-line to the throne is best known for her charity work and equestrian efforts, the latter of which have won her many awards including world championship medals and winning Sports Personality of the Year.
HRH first married Captain Mark Phillips in 1973, however, they divorced in 1992. Together the couple had two children, Peter Mark Andrew Phillips born in 1977, and Zara Anne Elizabeth Phillips born in 1981.
She later married Timothy Laurence in 1992. Never before in British history had a senior member of the Royal Family remarried after a divorce.
In her sporting career, the Princess had the opportunity to represent Great Britain in the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games, where she was on board The Queen’s horse, Goodwill. Although she didn’t win a medal, HRH did a lot for British equestrianism and has since been a member of the International Olympic Committee.
Anne’s daughter, Zara, followed in her mother’s footsteps, having also had a lot of equestrian success. In 2012 Anne presented her daughter with a silver medal in the London Olympics.
The Queen’s daughter started her official duties early on in life, just after she left secondary school where she accompanied her parents on a visit to Austria.
Anne was 2015’s busiest royal as she carried out 456 engagements. She is patron of over 200 charities and devotes most of her time to these.
One of her most famous moments was in 1974 when somebody attempted to kidnap the Princess. On returning from an engagement, HRH’s car was stopped by an armed man named Ian Ball.
Ball shot Anne’s protection officer James Beaton and driver, Alex Callender. However, on attempting to remove the Princess from the car, Anne shouted: “Not bloody likely!” and, and almost hit Mr Ball.
HRH escaped from the situation unharmed. For their bravery Beaton was awarded the George’s Cross and Callender was awarded with The Queen’s Gallantry Medal.