Princess Anne visits Balerno pupils with complex needs during Edinburgh trip

Children’s charity, Harmeny Education Trust, welcomed HRH The Princess Royal on Thursday to its school and grounds in Balerno.

Friday, 2nd July 2021, 12:30 pm
Updated Friday, 2nd July 2021, 12:33 pm

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Princess Anne is no stranger to Harmeny, having last visited 21 years ago to open their primary education facilities.

As children showed her round the grounds, they pointed out the cottage she also opened formally in the 1980s.

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Princess Anne is shown around Harmeny by two of the children

They were also delighted to show her the bird boxes they had made as part of the Edinburgh Swift City Project, and to share their enjoyment of the extensive outdoor and therapeutic facilitates the charity has developed over the years.

School children were excited to meet Princess Anne, one child said: “At first I didn’t believe that we were meeting a real Princess.”

Welcomed to the school by Edinburgh’s Lord Provost and Jennifer Scott, Harmeny’s Chair of Trustees, Princess Anne also learned about Harmeny’s plans for a new learning hub and services designed to help more young people rebuild their lives and reshape their futures.

As well visiting pupils in one of the bird-themed classrooms, she learned more about Harmeny’s therapeutic approach to care and learning from the care team and teachers.

HRH discussing past visits to harmeny children in their home

At the end of a visit Princess Anne took left, not only with a strong impression of Harmeny’s commitment to supporting remarkable young people to overcome adversity, but also with a bird box of her own.

Head of Care, Craig Paul said “It was a pleasure to see The Princess Royal sharing with the children her own memories from previous visits to Harmeny and, in turn, creating a new experience for them to enjoy and share with others for years to come.”

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The Princess Royal in the children's home viewing photos of their recent caravan holiday

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Princess Anne meets members of Harmeny's senior management team