Princess Anne reveals why she doesn't shake hands with members of the public

25 September 2018, 09:29

Royal London Yacht Club Champagne Party At Lendy Cowes Week
Picture: Getty

By Tom Eames

Princess Anne might be known as one of the hardest-working royals, but don't expect a handshake from The Queen's daughter.

While you might see the Queen herself shake hands with members of the public on 'walkabouts' (albeit with gloves on), Princess Anne prefers to keep her hands to herself.

In the new documentary Queen of the World, The Princess Royal admitted that she has always stuck to traditional protocol.

"We never shook hands," she says, referring to the rule the family used before the Queen started relaxing it in the 1970s.

She continued: "The theory was that you couldn’t shake hands with everybody, so don’t start. So I kind of stick with that, but I noticed others don’t.

“It's not for me to say that it's wrong, but I think the initial concept was that it was patently absurd to start shaking hands. And it seems to be that it's become a shaking hands exercise rather than a walkabout if you see what I mean."

The 2018 Braemar Highland Gathering
Picture: Getty

However, physical contact isn't Princess Anne's main annoyance when it comes to meeting the public.

"Phones are bad enough, but the iPads—you can’t even see their heads," she said. "No idea who you’re talking to. I either don’t bother or just say, 'Look, if you want to ask…I suggest you put that down.' It is weird.

"People don’t believe they’ve experienced the event unless they’ve taken a photograph."

The documentary also features the Queen being asked to record her Christmas message again after a bird made too much noise, while Meghan Markle is reunited with her wedding dress.