With the announcement of Prince Harry’s upcoming marriage to Meghan Markle and The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh’s 70th wedding anniversary celebrations, it is easy for Princess Anne’s milestone to be overlooked by the media.
But on Tuesday, all eyes are firmly on the Princess as she celebrates 25 years of marriage to Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence.
The Princess Royal’s marriage to the Royal Navy commander took place at Crathie Kirk near Balmoral Castle in Scotland.
As her ex-husband was alive when she married Sir Tim, they were forced to marry North of the border as the Church of England did not allow divorced people to remarry in its churches at the time.
Princess Anne made history as she became the first royal to divorce and remarry since Queen Victoria’s granddaughter remarried in 1905.
It was during the time he served as an Equerry that he met his future wife, Princess Anne. Their first encounter was aboard the Royal Yacht Britannia, on which he was a Navigation Officer, while the Princess was on a tour of duty. Soon afterwards, he was chosen as a personal adviser to Princess Anne’s Charities Trust, affirming her affection for him.
Their relationship became public in 1989 when letters written to the Princess Royal by the then Commander Laurence were stolen and published in the newspapers. This shocked the royal household, and there was talk of his committing high treason by being romantically involved with the Monarch’s daughter while she was still married to another man.
However, the Queen had grown fond of her Equerry, and chose not to take the “treason” seriously, deciding that the relationship could not be all that bad if her daughter found happiness in it.
Upon marriage, he received no peerage, but he was knighted in 2011 by Her Majesty.
In 2010, Timothy Laurence retired from the Navy and chose to focus instead on non-executive, charitable interests. His role as a member of the royal family is mainly a supportive one, and he does not make many public appearances.
He occasionally accompanies Princess Anne when she embarks on her official duties and can be seen on the balcony at royal events such as Trooping of the Colour and Remembrance Day.
Sir Timothy has no children of his own but is very close to his step-children, Peter and Zara Phillips. He was the captain of the cricket team at his college and enjoys tennis and golf. Being a military man, he has an interest in activities such as battlefield tours. He shares his wife’s love of sailing and yachting, and together they have a yacht, Ballochbuie.