Members of the Osmington community shook the hands of HRH Princess Royal during her visit to the village on Monday to commemorate the completion of restoration work on its famous White Horse.
Princess Anne arrived in a helicopter to greet the restoration volunteers, including Dorset ACF Cadets, PGL Osmington Adventure Centre staff, Weymouth Scouts and Dorset Countryside Ranger Service.
All had worked strenuously over a two year period to restore the 200 year old eroded monument of King George III to its original outline.
Her Royal Highness said: “Thank you for everything that you have done. From every aspect, this is a tremendous idea that could have just remained an idea – but a lot of you have made it happen.”
Geoff Codd, chairman of the Osmington White Horse Restoration Group, said: “We are so glad that you have decided to come and share this experience with us. Now when we look at the hillside, we think of our history, King George III, and all of our volunteers who were here slipping around on the slope and braving the weather.”
Eight marines also spent 10 hours a day for a week extracting 160 tonnes of gravel from the horse’s legs that was wrongly placed there by TV presenter Anneka Rice during her 1989 series The Anneka Challenge. One said: “It is an honour to have our work acknowledged by her majesty.”
To hear an extended interview with volunteer marines and Army Colonel Gorden Davies and PGL Osmington Bay representative click play below: