Princess Anne unveiled a plaque commemorating a new chapter for Gloucester charity, the Family Haven.
The princess, who drove her navy Range Rover herself from her Minchinhampton home arrived 10 minutes early to talk to mothers.
Wearing an emerald – green suit, Princess Anne was welcomed by School of the Lion junior children waving green and white pomspoms and met by the Mayor of Gloucester, Councillor Janet Lugg, the Lord Lieutenant of the County, Colonel Henry Elwes, the Family Haven’s Trust president, Anne Cadbury, and the trust chairman, Peter Whiteman.
The trust, which moved to larger premises in Spa Road last year, provides advice, support and practical help for more than 1,000 mothers and their children every year.
Princess Anne met almost 20 mothers and children.
Anne-Marie Davis and her daughter Vanessa (2) have been at the Family Haven since Christmas, ” I was a bit nervous about meeting the princess,” admitted Anne-Marie, “but it was just like talking to anyone.”
“She asked how long I’ve been here. I think it’s really nice she came here to meet us.”
Anne-Marie said the Family Haven really has been a haven for her. ” It’s brilliant here. All the kids are friends and everyone’s really supportive.”
The Family Haven’s move from Wellington Street has given workers the chance to help even more families and expand their work with children. They have also been able to look at caring for disabled youngsters and provide more room for mothers to meet and talk with one another.
Princess Anne unveiled a plaque and was presented with a bouquet by one little girl, Shakira Harrison.
Lorraine Barrett, manager of the Family Haven, said the Haven was thrilled to host The Princess Royal’s visit. She said: ” The builders have been working on our new day centre since we moved in a year ago.” ” There is still building work to finish but the interior is done and the gardens are all complete so it was a real pleasure to show the princess around.”
The Princess Royal’s Visit to The Family Haven in Gloucester was part of a tour of three county charities.