Town fit for a princess on its special day

HRH Princess Anne meets crowds in Thame and below unveils a plaque in the town centre
HRH Princess Anne meets crowds in Thame and below unveils a plaque in the town centre
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Market traders across Thame welcomed HRH The Princess Royal to the town to mark the 800th anniversary of the market charter.

Princess Anne arrived in the town at 11am yesterday (Tuesday) where she was greeted by Deputy Lieutenant Bernard Taylor, South Oxfordshire District Council chairman Ann Midwinter, Thame MP John Howell, the mayor of Thame Jeannette Matelot Green, the town clerk Helen Stewart and Thame market traders secretary, Chris Hurdman, who had sent the invitation to Her Royal Highness.

Princess Anne unveils a plaque during her visit to Thame

Princess Anne unveils a plaque during her visit to Thame

Escorted by Mr Hurdman, the princess met many of the traders, some new to the market and others who are following in their fathers and grandfathers footsteps and have been trading for upwards of 30 years.

Stallholders included greengrocer Pat Worthington whose stall had been trading in fruit and vegetables for more than 38 years and Emily and Alice Chilton who are fourth generation traders helping their father on his foam stall in between studying.

In response to Princess Anne’s visit Mr Hurdman said: “I have been honoured to show Her Royal Highness around our Gaff, it’s not every day you get to walk a princess around the market.

“This has been a wonderful experience for me personally and from the feedback I have received from the traders, they too are deeply honoured to have her visit.”

The purpose of the Princess’ visit to Thame was to unveil a plaque to commemorate the 800th anniversary of the granting of the Thame market charter.

Princess Anne then made her way to the Market House where she revealed a newly engraved brass plaque in front of a large crowd of eager residents who had gathered to welcome her.

In a speech to the princess and the crowd, Mr Hurdman said: “We are fortunate that Thame market is so well supported by local residents and residents from the surrounding towns and villages.

“I am always happy when I am told how proud the people of Thame are about their community market.”