Princess Anne broke an unofficial royal rule as she gave her first public interview since the passing of her father, Prince Philip.
The recording came from a sparsely decorated room that seemed a far cry from the homely parlour seen in other videos with all the ornaments and personal touches blurred into the background, writes The Mirror.
And as the UK basked in glorious sunshine, Princess Anne wore her favourite black suede boots, natural tights and formal wool suit to present a special centenary award of the Prince Philip Medal to Dr Gladys West at her home in Virginia USA.
However one eagle-eyed royalist was quick to notice that the Princess Royal crossed her legs during the socially distanced TV interview with ITV Royal correspondent Chris Ship on the day her father would have marked his 100th birthday.
They tweeted: “#princessanne sitting like a normal woman with her legs crossed instead of the ridiculous “royal position” of uncrossed.”
The Princess did not break any hard and fast written rule when she was pictured sitting in a chair as she presented the medal from The Royal Academy of Engineering
But female royals usually favour the modest and flattering “Duchess Slant” when wearing a skirt, or at least straight legged.
Etiquette expert Myka Meier told People it was because most royals adopted the Duchess Slant which involves putting your knees and ankles together, slanting your legs to the side, and placing your hands on your lap.
The Princess Royal once said she would liked to have been an engineer if she had not been born into the Royal Family and told Mr Ship that had something to do with her father who would have been 100 on the day of the ITV interview.
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Speaking from Gloucestershire in her first interview since his death in April she said the family “all have to move on” and until his death not many people had understood how broad his interests were or his “can do” practical nature which had helped to shape her childhood.
“If anything broke, there was always a thought of ‘have a look at this and see if you can mend it’,” she said.
“He didn’t throw things away, and that often comes from your own family background. Anyone that goes through the Royal Navy training and spends such a long time on a ship, you have to mend and make do.
“Make things work be practical and adjust.”
She said it was down to his life experience and extended to the BBQ trailer on the back of his Land Rover.
“The trailer was designed specifically for that role and everything had a place and you needed to know where it was and then it worked,” she said.
The Royal Academy of Engineering had always planned to issue a special centenary award of The Prince Philip Medal – to mark the occasion of his birthday.
Dr Gladys West became the first woman in the medal’s 30 year history to be awarded the honour in recognition of how her work modelling the earth’s surface led to the development of GPS satellite positioning system.
Princess Anne told her: “My father of course was a naval officer but he was also a navigator so for him your work has been particularly relevant.”
After her father’s death Princess Anne paid tribute to Prince Philip, describing him as her “teacher, supporter and critic”.
She said: “You know it’s going to happen but you are never really ready.
“My father has been my teacher, my supporter and my critic, but mostly it is his example of a life well lived and service freely given that I most wanted to emulate.”
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