The Princess Royal at home: Anne pictured at Gatcombe Park to mark 70th birthday

Rebecca Taylor
·Royal Correspondent
·4-min read
Embargoed to 2200 BST Friday August 14, 2020. Not for use after Friday September 4, 2020, without prior approval from Royal Communications and Camera Press. Mandatory credit: John Swannell / Camera Press One of three official photographs taken by John Swannell of The Princess Royal which have been released to celebrate her 70th birthday on Saturday.
Princess Anne is known for her no nonsense approach to life. (John Swannell/Camera Press One)

Three images of Princess Anne at her country home of Gatcombe Park have been released to mark her 70th birthday.

Anne, the only daughter of the Queen, has been a working royal for more than five decades, and is regularly crowned among the hardest working, carrying out upwards of 500 engagements each year.

The three official portraits were taken by renowned photographer John Swannell who has taken pictures of people from Diana, Princess of Wales and her sons and the Queen’s official Diamond Jubilee portrait in 2012 to Tony Blair, Sir Michael Caine and Sir Elton John.

In one image, she is dressed casually, in a checked shirt, over a red polo neck, as she stands in front of a tree.

But in the other two, she is far more glamorous, in one wearing a Maureen Baker evening dress and Sue Palmer bolero jacket, as she sits in a gilded chair and smiles broadly into the camera.

In the final image she wears a Sue Palmer emerald green dress and a gold ribbon knot brooch, set with 12 diamonds.

The pictures were taken in February, before the lockdown in the UK.

Embargoed to 2200 BST Friday August 14, 2020. Not for use after Friday September 4, 2020, without prior approval from Royal Communications and Camera Press. Mandatory credit: John Swannell / Camera Press One of three official photographs taken by John Swannell of The Princess Royal which have been released to celebrate her 70th birthday on Saturday.
Anne wears a floor length Maureen Baker gown in one image as she smiles broadly into the camera. (John Swannell/Camera Press One)
Embargoed to 2200 BST Friday August 14, 2020. Not for use after Friday September 4, 2020, without prior approval from Royal Communications and Camera Press. Mandatory credit: John Swannell / Camera Press One of three official photographs taken by John Swannell of The Princess Royal which have been released to celebrate her 70th birthday on Saturday.
The official images feature three different outfits, showing the multi faceted royal. (John Swannell/Camera Press One)

Read more: Seven stunning throwback photos of Princess Anne as she turns 70

The three outfit changes reflect the multi-faceted royal - one who is as comfortable dressed to feed her chickens in Gloucestershire as she is to sit at a formal banquet.

Known for her no nonsense approach, Anne was the last royal still out on in-person engagements before the coronavirus lockdown, and has been driving herself to visits since they began again.

Interviews and documentaries marking her milestone birthday reveal she sometimes clashes with older brother Charles, particularly over climate change and organic farming.

Her son, Peter Philips, described her as “tenacious”.

Anne looks likely to spend her birthday, on Saturday, in Scotland, though any large celebrations have had to be postponed.

Earlier this week, her son-in-law Mike Tindall told The One Show: “We did have plans – it would’ve been up in Scotland – but obviously with COVID and Aberdeen being locked down a bit, I think everything’s been scaled back a little bit.

“It’s a shame. I’m sure we’ll do something as a family to celebrate her 70 amazing years, she’s just an incredible woman in terms of how much work she can get through in the year.

“We will be doing something, as yet I don’t know whether she knows – so my lips are sealed.”

ASCOT, ENGLAND - JUNE 21:  Princess Anne, Princess Royal and Timothy Laurence attend Royal Ascot Day 3 at Ascot Racecourse on June 21, 2018 in Ascot, United Kingdom. (Photo by Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty Images)
Princess Anne and Timothy Laurence at Royal Ascot in 2018. He is her second husband. (Getty Images)

Anne is known to enjoy a regular summer sailing trip with her husband Vice Admiral Timothy Laurence, and may be able to do the same this year.

Christened Anne Elizabeth Alice Louise she was born at Clarence House on 15 August 1950, the Princess Royal has gone onto live a varied life, from representing Team GB at the Olympic Games, to winning Sports Personality of the Year, to shrugging off a kidnapping attempt and getting a criminal record.

She was a trailblazer, opting not to give either of her children a royal title, something they have been grateful for.

Read more: Nine quotes that show Princess Anne has never been a traditional royal

ASCOT, UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 17: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 48 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Zara Phillips, Mike Tindall and Princess Anne, The Princess Royal wave to Queen Elizabeth II and other members of The Royal Family in the carriage procession as they attend Day 1 of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 17, 2014 in Ascot, England. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)
Zara and Mike Tindall with Princess Anne at Royal Ascot in 2014. (Getty Images)

In 1971 she was named Sports Personality of the Year and in 1976, won a place in the Montreal Olympics as a three-day eventer in the British equestrian team.

Anne and her first husband Captain Mark Phillips survived a kidnapping attempt in 1974 and have two children together - Peter and Zara.

She’s called Gatcombe Park home since 1977, and as well as being a working farm, it’s hosted many equestrian events over the years, including the Gatcombe horse trials.

STROUD, ENGLAND - MARCH 25:  Princess Anne, Princess Royal  with her son Peter Phillips and granddaughters Savannah Phillips and Mia Tindall during the Gatcombe Horse Trials at Gatcombe Park on March 25, 2017 in Stroud, England.  (Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage)
Princess Anne, with her son Peter Phillips and granddaughters Savannah Phillips and Mia Tindall during the Gatcombe Horse Trials in 2017. (WireImage)

Both Peter Phillips and Zara Tindall and their families have homes in the grounds.

She was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by President Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia in 1990 for her work as president of the charity Save The Children.

In 2002, she became the first senior Royal Family member to get a criminal record, after she pleaded guilty at East Berkshire Magistrates’ Court in Slough to a charge under the Dangerous Dogs Act.

Her dog Dotty bit two children in Windsor Great Park, for which she was fined £500.

Mother to two, grandmother to four, the Princess Royal shows no signs of slowing down as she enters another decade of royal service.