Musicians prepare for a performance in front of royalty

CONCERT DATE Musicians who graduated this summer from the Royal Marines School of Music, and inset, Princess Anne
CONCERT DATE Musicians who graduated this summer from the Royal Marines School of Music, and inset, Princess Anne

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PRINCESS Anne is in for a treat this week when she visits Portsmouth to see the Royal Marines School of Music perform.

The royal guest has been invited to tour the school on Thursday and see how recruits are being turned into world-class musicians.

Princess Anne

Princess Anne

It is the Portsmouth-based school’s first royal visit since 1996 when the Princess Royal’s brother, the Earl of Wessex, opened the establishment after it moved from Kent.

Major Jon Ridley is the school’s director of music.

He said: ‘The Royal Marines School of Music is extremely proud to be hosting Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal.

‘It will be an opportunity to demonstrate the high quality of training and the pursuit of musical excellence that lies at the heart of all that we do here.

‘We are always pleased to welcome guests to the school, but this will certainly be a day to remember and not one easily forgotten by the trainees, instructors, and professors, who will have the chance to meet and speak with Her Royal Highness.

‘I know that when the Princess Royal watches the Parade Band perform she will see a group of dedicated young men and women who will be marching and playing with an extra sense of pride.’

Musicians and buglers spend up to two years and eight months in training before joining one of the five Royal Marines bands which are recognised as among the best in the world.

As well as their most high-profile role performing at engagements around the globe, Royal Marines musicians are also trained to support global military and humanitarian operations.

As part of her visit, Princess Anne is also expected to open the new headquarters of the Portsmouth Citizens’ Advice Bureau, in Winston Churchill Avenue.

She is the patron of the National Association of Citizens’ Advice Bureaux.

Later, she will attend a Trafalgar Night dinner at the Wardroom of HMS Collingwood in Fareham.

Then on Friday, she will attend a passing out parade at HMS Sultan in Gosport.