Princess Anne makes special Royal visit to Northamptonshire for official openings and plaque unveilings

'It was great for the volunteers as they are the ones who put all the effort in and make the services happen'

Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 1:17 pm
Updated Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 4:35 pm

The Princess Royal made a special visit to three organisations in Northamptonshire yesterday (Tuesday, April 27).

Princess Anne started her trip by officially opening Siri Guru Singh Sabha, the Sikh Community Centre and Youth Club Northampton's new gurdwara in St James.

Her Royal Highness then presented reusable nappy firm Bambino Mio with The Queen’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade and officially opened its new headquarters in Brixworth.

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Lastly the princess attended the centenary celebrations of global chemical company Scott Bader in Wollaston.

Sikh community centre trustee Amarjit Atwal Singh told the Chronicle & Echo: "It was great for the volunteers as they are the ones who put all the effort in and make the services happen.

"So it's good the volunteers to meet with Her Royal Highness, who was very down to earth and spoke to every single person her and put them at ease as she wanted to find out how they support the gurdwara."

The Princess Royal arrived by helicopter for the visit to the gurdwara, where she was introduced to members of the management committee, volunteers for the Hot Food for the Homeless project and food bank, Northampton mayor Rufia Ashraf and others by Lord Leiutenant of Northamptonshire James Saunders Watson.

Princess Anne visits Siri Guru Singh Sabha with gurdwara trustee Amarjit Atwal Singh and Lord Leiutenant of Northamptonshire James Saunders Watson. Photo: Royal Family

Princess Anne was shown around the new gurdwara on St James Mill Road, including the new museum which will be used for educational visits, before unveiling a plaque.

Mr Singh said they were unsure if the visit would go ahead because of the Duke of Edinburgh's death but they were pleased it did, although they had to keep it a secret.

He said they were put forward by Lord Leiutenant of Northamptonshire after winning The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service last year for their dedication to supporting those in need during the coronavirus pandemic.

"We spoke about the work we have been doing during the pandemic, how many people rely on our services now and the fact the food bank wasn't here a year ago and now it's serving 400 people a week," he added.

Princess Anne visits Siri Guru Singh Sabha with gurdwara trustee Amarjit Atwal Singh. Photo: Royal Family

"We are proud and it seemed like she enjoyed it and so did the volunteers."

The Princess Royal then headed to Bambino Mio's new base in Staveley Way, where she was warmly welcomed by the team who told her all about the business.

Founder and managing director, Guy Schanschieff, was presented with award, which was particularly significant for him as Princess Anne gave him his MBE for services to business exactly 10 years ago.

“This was a really special way of celebrating our businesses success and it was an honour to introduce HRH The Princess Royal to some of our Bambino Mio team," he said.

Princess Anne meets Siri Guru Singh Sabha volunteers with gurdwara trustee Amarjit Atwal Singh. Photo: Royal Family

“This was a truly momentous occasion for me, as it was the Princess Royal herself who awarded me with my MBE back in 2011.

"This is yet another accolade which proves that the purposeful work we are doing at Bambino Mio is genuinely driving a positive change within the reusable baby product category.”

Bambino Mio's award recognised its outstanding international growth and its ongoing efforts to make reusable nappies and associated sustainable products commercially acceptable and available worldwide.

At the conclusion of the visit, the Princess Royal unveiled a commemorative plaque to mark the opening of the new headquarters, which was significantly expanded last year, including the creation of new offices and a new warehouse.

Princess Anne visits reusable nappy firm Bambino Mio in Brixworth
Princess Anne visits reusable nappy firm Bambino Mio in Brixworth
Princess Anne visits reusable nappy firm Bambino Mio in Brixworth
Princess Anne visits reusable nappy firm Bambino Mio in Brixworth
Princess Anne visits reusable nappy firm Bambino Mio in Brixworth