It’s been a capital kind of week for the Princess Royal who, unusually, has carried out all of her engagements over the past seven days in London. She might not have clocked up the miles but that’s not to say Anne’s diary wasn’t as packed as we’ve come to expect from her. She’s given her support to a wide range of the organisations of which she is patron in the past week. It’s time to keep up with Anne.
The working week began on Tuesday March 19th when the Princess Royal started her day in the City of London where she chaired the Freedom Court Meeting of the Worshipful Company of Saddlers of which she is Perpetual Master before attending a lunch with them. She then went on to hold two meetings at St. James’ Palace. She received Adrian Saunders as he gave up his role of Chief Executive of the English Rural Housing Association – Anne is its patron. She then met Martin Collett who is taking on the role now.
Later that day, Anne was at a dinner for another of her patronages. She has been involved with Opportunity International, which helps entrepreneurs in developing countries to set up their businesses with support and loans, for several years and on March 19th she was at a dinner held for them in central London.
The following day started with an audience with Surgeon Rear Admiral Lionel Jarvis of St. John Ambulance – Anne is the organisation’s Commandant in Chief (Youth). Then it was on to a lunch for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Commonwealth Study Conference of which she is President, held on the Strand.
The Princess Royal then went on to present the UK Armed Forces Sports Awards at the RAF Club in Piccadilly. The prizes, which celebrate sporting excellence across all the armed forces, included recognition for Captain Jen Kehoe who was named Sportswoman of the Year after guiding partially sighted skier Menna Fitzpatrick as she became the most decorated British athlete ever at the Winter Paralympics.
Wednesday also saw Anne attend the anniversary celebrations of the Lady Ratlings who have been raising money for good causes for ninety years. The group, made up of professional performers, was set up in 1929 and Anne is a Companion Ratling – one of her more unusual titles!
The day ended with a dinner for another of the organisations which the Princess Royal supports. She hosted a celebration at St. James’ Palace for the Woodland Trust’s First World War Centenary Woods Project of which she is patron. The project sees people across the UK sponsor and dedicate a tree in four special areas to remember those who fought in the war.
On March 21st 2019, the Princess Royal visited the United Kingdom Dementia Research Institute at University College London where she met researchers and heard about the latest work going on to find ways of tackling the condition which affects millions of people across the UK.
Anne then went on to the annual awards for the Butler Trust which supports and promotes good practice across prisons. The princess is the organisation’s patron. The day’s final engagement saw Anne, who is Colonel in Chief of the Royal Logistics Corps, attend a 25th anniversary dinner in London.
The week also saw an unannounced engagement for the Princess Royal who travelled to New Zealand House in London to offer her condolences following the terrorist attack in Christchurch in which fifty people were killed.
The week ended for Anne at home but there was no time to put her feet up. The princess organises the annual Gatcombe Park Horse Trials at her country estate and as the contest got under way she was on hand to see everything ran smoothly.
Gatcombe attracts competitors from around the world, bringing a boost to the local economy as well as equestrianism itself. However, it’s not listed on the Court Circular so doesn’t get included in the tally of Anne’s annual engagements. So far this year, the Princess Royal has carried out 98 engagements. In 2018, she was the busiest member of the Royal Family with a total of 518 engagements in the year.