Princess Anne’s Gatcombe Park Estate in Gloucestershire

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Sophia Chen

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Sophia Chen

Writer/ Reviewer

Princess Anne’s Gatcombe Estate

Gatcombe Park has been the country home of Princess Anne, the Princess Royal, since 1976, when Queen Elizabeth II purchased the estate as a gift for her daughter and son-in-law, Captain Mark Phillips.

Historical Background

Gatcombe Park’s origins trace back to the late 18th century when Edward Sheppard built the house between 1771 and 1774, using the combined lands of the Minchinhampton and Avening manors as the foundation of the estate.

In 1820, architect George Basevi rebuilt the current manor house for the economist David Ricardo.

The Ricardo family then owned the property until 1937, when art collector Samuel Courtauld purchased it.

It was later inherited by Courtauld’s son-in-law, R.A. Butler, from whom Queen Elizabeth II purchased Gatcombe Park in 1976.

Front of Princess Anne’s Gatcombe Estate

Following this acquisition, Princess Anne and her first husband, Captain Mark Phillips, moved into the 730-acre estate and raised their two children, Peter and Zara, there.  

When Anne and Phillips divorced in 1992, she continued to reside at Gatcombe Park with her second husband, Sir Timothy Laurence. 

In addition to being Princess Anne’s primary residence, Gatcombe Park has also housed other members of the royal family, including Zara and her husband Mike Tindall, who moved to the Aston Farm section of the estate in 2013.

Equestrian Legacy

Princess Anne, who is 73 years old, is known for her passion for horses and equestrian sports.

She has competed in the Olympics and continues to be an active member of the royal family, often attending public events and fulfilling royal duties.

Her passion is reflected in the estate, which operates as a working farm and features a variety of livestock, including breeding horses and cattle.

It is also renowned for hosting the annual Festival of British Eventing, a major equestrian competition that has taken place on the grounds since 1983.

Additionally, the estate’s grounds include 200 acres of parkland with a lake and extensive stabling for the horses used in the festival and for breeding purposes.

Horse Statue at Princess Anne’s Gatcombe Estate
Horse Riding at Princess Anne’s Gatcombe Estate
Horse Riding at Princess Anne’s Gatcombe Estate
Horse Riding at Princess Anne’s Gatcombe Estate

Gatcombe Park’s historic significance as a royal residence and its role in hosting major equestrian events have made it an important part of the Princess Royal’s life and the broader royal family’s country estate portfolio.

Horse Riding at Princess Anne’s Gatcombe Estate

Princess Anne Hospitalized Following Incident at Gatcombe Park

On June 25, 2024, it was reported that Princess Anne had been hospitalized with a minor head injury and concussion following an incident at Gatcombe Park the previous evening.

The incident occurred while Princess Anne was out walking near horses on her estate.

Medical experts suggested her injuries were consistent with a potential impact from a horse’s head or legs, indicating she may have been kicked or headbutted by a horse.

Emergency services transported her to Southmead Hospital in Bristol for further evaluation, treatment, and monitoring.

Buckingham Palace stated that she is “recovering well” and expected to make a “full and swift recovery.”

Due to the concussion, her scheduled royal engagements for the week, including a planned trip to Canada and attendance at a state banquet for the Japanese Emperor and Empress, have been postponed.

Proximity to Highgrove House

Gatcombe Park is situated just 6 miles away from Highgrove House, the country residence of Anne’s brother, King Charles III.

This close proximity allows for frequent family visits and shared events between the two royal estates.

Highgrove House
Credit: Highgrove Gardens

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