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Princess Anne's heartwarming birthday gift revealed

The Princess Royal has been Carers Trust's president since 2012

Danielle Stacey

The Princess Royal launched a new fund on Tuesday to help thousands of unpaid carers take a break from their demanding roles. 

The Princess Royal Respite Fund for Carers has been created to secure long-term funding for Carers Trust's respite services and aims to raise over £3 million over the next three years. 

The fund has been named after Princess Anne to mark her 70th birthday last August. The Princess Royal has been president of Carers Trust since 2012. 

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WATCH: The Queen and Princess Anne speak with carers

Carers Trust said that an ageing population has led to a steep increase in demand for social care in the community and the "need for a properly funded respite support for carers has never been more urgent". 

The fund aims to provide 30,000 carers with grants via Carers Trust’s network of more than 120 local partners.

The Respite Fund For Carers means Carers Trust will be able to significantly increase the number of grants it makes to carers via the Carers Trust's Network of over 120 local partner services. 

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The Queen joined Anne on a video call to speak with carers last year

Chairman of Carers Trust board of trustees, John McLean, said: "As most of us begin to emerge from months of lockdown, many unpaid carers will be staying at home to continue providing round-the-clock care for a loved one without the prospect of even the smallest break.

"They need our support right now, and that is why Carers Trust is launching the Respite Fund, so we can support more carers to have time to themselves and the breaks they both need and deserve.

"On behalf of my fellow colleagues and trustees, I would like to thank Her Royal Highness for her unstinting support which has made the Respite Fund possible."

Last June, Anne recorded a special message from her home at Gatcombe Park in Gloucestershire to thank and show support for Carers Week. 

The Queen's only daughter carried out a busy schedule of engagements last week, which took her from Hampshire to Norfolk, including a visit to UCL Eastman Dental Institute.

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