Princess Anne ‘really touched’ by royal fans’ shows of support after Queen’s death
Princess Anne says she found royal fans’ public shows of support after her late mum the Queen’s death “really touching”.
The Princess Royal, 72, also spoke about how the monarchy gives Britain “stability” in a rare interview ahead of her 74-year-old brother King Charles’ coronation on 6 May.
She told Canadian TV channel CBC News about her emotions travelling the UK during the official mourning period for the Queen, who died aged 96 in September at her beloved Balmoral estate: “I think we took a lot of it in, partly because we knew the route and I did actually spot people I knew on the way.
“It was such an impressive sight and it was more than that because it was really touching in the way that people responded and how they did things.
“People brought their ponies and horses out, but they not only brought them out, they plaited them, they were properly dressed and well turned out.
“They brought their tractors out, and they parked them tidily, they were all clean.
“If you come from a rural background I was really impressed, it was just an astonishing sight. But the sheer numbers of people who turned up in quite extraordinary places. You’re never going to miss that and the atmosphere it created.
“Leaving Balmoral was never easy, but then it never has been. I was just as bad when I was leaving as a child, because I didn’t like leaving, (I was happy there.)”
She added about what Charles will bring to the monarchy: “Well, you know what you're getting because he’s been practising for a bit, and I don’t think he’ll change.
“He is committed to his own level of service, that will remain true.
When asked for her thoughts on reports many people in Britain no longer find the royal family relevant, Anne insisted: “We don’t, in many respects, need to deal with it, not least of all because it is the monarch that is the key to this and the constitution that underpins the monarchy.
“We as a family see ourselves as there to support that role. What we do, we hope, contributes to the monarchy and the way in which it can convey continuity, not just of interest but service and understanding the way that people and communities want to live their lives.
“I think so often we get the chance to see communities and the people who do things really well and are very generous with their time in a way that, if you look at the media, you tend not to get that impression.
“There will be (debates about the monarchy’s relevance in society) everywhere. “It’s not a conversation that I would necessarily have.
“It’s perfectly true that there is a moment when you need to have that discussion but I would just underline that the monarchy provides, with the constitution, a degree of long-term stability that is actually quite hard to come by in any other way.”