Published: 15/06/2018 11:42 - Updated: 15/06/2018 11:46

Royal Lighthouse Quest


Princess Anne on a previous visit to Scotland.
Princess Anne on a previous visit to Scotland.


Keen pharologist, The Princess Royal, is to bag more lighthouses off the west coast next month in her quest to see every one in Scotland.

She is to spend three days off the west coast – including Sutherland - on board the Northern Lighthouse Board vessel Pharos starting on July 21.

Anne, who has been patron of the NLB since 1993, had her interest in lighthouses sparked at an early age.

Aged just five, Anne accompanied the Queen on a visit to Tiumpan Head on the Isle of Lewis. Prince Charles got to blow the foghorn, but it was the princess who seems to have been hooked.

Since then Anne's ambition is to see all the 206 lighthouses and major lights in Scotland. It is believed she is now well past the half-way point.

Anne has also visited an unknown number privately on jaunts with her husband Sir Tim Laurence. The couple have a new £500,000 yacht 'Ballochbuie' based at Ardfern in Argyll - from where they can explore even more Scottish islands and lighthouses.

Previously it was revealed that the yacht was saved by a £15 fan belt from a Vauxhall Astra after breaking down at sea off the isle of Eigg. A fan belt was finally sourced from a garage 80 miles away in Tobermory on Mull.

Among the lighthouses Anne has already "ticked-off" is Bell Rock, the world's oldest surviving sea-washed lighthouse, off the coast of Angus; the spectacular Bass Rock, Cape Wrath, St Abbs Head and Fife Ness.

And also among the lighthouses Anne has visited in the past is arguably the world's most famous - the Flannan Isles in the Outer Hebrides where on Boxing Day 1900, it was discovered that the three keepers James Ducat, Thomas Marshall and Donald McArthur had vanished.

In 1998, she was present for the final shift of Scotland's last manned lighthouse in Fair Isle.

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