Princess Anne's tribute as she accompanies 'dearest mother' on her final journey

The Queen and her daughter, the Princess Royal, were very close. Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

The Princess Royal says it has been “an honour and a privilege” to accompany the Queen on her final journey, as she travels with her late mother’s coffin back to London.

Anne, the late monarch’s only daughter, said she was “fortunate to share the last 24 hours of my dearest Mother’s life”.

She said the love and respect shown to the Queen on her journey from Balmoral to Edinburgh and onto London had been “both humbling uplifting”.

Anne also thanked the nation for the “support and understanding offered to my dear brother Charles” as he takes on his duties as King.

She ended her statement with the words: “To my mother, The Queen, thank you.”

The princess was in Scotland when the Queen was taken ill, and stayed at her bedside at Balmoral Castle, as senior royals travelled to say their final farewells.

Princess Anne is driven through Aberdeen, on a six-hour journey following the hearse carrying her mother's coffin. Credit: PA

Elizabeth II – the nation’s longest reigning monarch – died peacefully on Thursday September 8.

Anne has taken on the duty of accompanying her mother’s body back to London, with the Queen leaving Scotland for the last time bound for RAF Northolt on Tuesday.

Just three days after her loss, Anne spent a six-hour journey has followed the hearse carrying her mother's coffin on its final journey through Scotland.

The Queen’s oak coffin, accompanied by Anne and her husband Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, is now travelling to Buckingham Palace where the King, the Queen Consort, the Prince and Princess of Wales and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will be waiting to receive it.

Also there will be the Earl and Countess of Wessex, the Duke of York, Princess Beatrice and husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, Princess Eugenie and husband Jack Brooksbank, Zara and Mike Tindall, Lady Louise Windsor and Viscount Severn, and Princess Margaret’s children Lady Sarah Chatto and Earl Snowdon.

Princess Anne’s full statement said: “I was fortunate to share the last 24 hours of my dearest mother’s life.

“It has been an honour and a privilege to accompany her on her final journeys.

“Witnessing the love and respect shown by so many on these journeys has been both humbling and uplifting.

Princess Anne watches on as the Queen is carried onto the plane Credit: AP

“We will all share unique memories. I offer my thanks to each and every one who share our sense of loss.

“We may have been reminded how much of her presence and contribution to our national identity we took for granted.

“I am also so grateful for the support and understanding offered to my dear brother Charles as he accepts the added responsibilities of the monarch.

“To my mother, The Queen, thank you.”

Princess Anne spoke candidly of her relationship with her mother, and the Queen's marriage to her father, the Duke of Edinburgh, in a previously unseen interview with ITV News.

Speaking to ITV five years ago, Anne said her mother led by example, and her children followed her lead by “watching and learning”.  

The remarkable life of the Queen remembered in our latest episode of What You Need To Know