Of Course Princess Anne Rode on a Horse at King Charles’ Coronation

Of Course Princess Anne Rode on a Horse at King Charles’ Coronation

Horse girl? Try, horse princess.

Princess Anne was the only royal on horseback at the coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla on May 6. As the royal procession left London’s Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace, the 72-year-old was spotted decked out in regalia as she rode on a horse behind her brother and sister-in-law, who were seated inside the Gold State Coach. (See all the guests at the coronation here.)

So, why was Anne not in a carriage like the rest of her family? The Princess Royal was serving as Charles’ “Gold-Stick-in-Waiting,” a bodyguard position dating back to the Tudor period.

“Gold Stick was the original close protection officer,” she explained in a recent interview with Canada’s CBC News. “That is a role I was asked if I’d like to do for this coronation, so I said yes.”

In addition, Anne joked that accepting the position, which would place her on horseback close to the monarch during the parade to protect him from harm, “solves my dress problem.”

And Anne is very comfortable around horses. After all, she competed in a three-day equestrian event at the 1976 Olympics. 

“I thought if I was going to do anything outside of the royal family, horses was likely to be the best way of doing it,” she recalled of her equestrian career to Vanity Fair in 2020. “But then you have to find the right horse at the right time. The original horse I rode was bred as a polo pony and should never have been an event horse, but it worked, so that was very satisfying.”

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