Simon Sweeney | Photographer for the Princess Anne visits at Turn to Starboard

I had the honour of being the host photographer whilst a Princess Royal meet staff, volunteers and beneficiaries at Turn to Starboard.

The Princess Royal was in Falmouth yesterday to meet staff, volunteers and beneficiaries of Turn to Starboard and to mark the start of preparations of a bid to sail around Britain.

Princess Anne arrived at Pendennis Castle in Falmouth by helicopter before being taken to the charity’s headquarters at Falmouth Marina by car.

She was met by Turn to Starboard founder RAF Squadron Leader (retired) Shaun Pascoe before chatting to civic dignitaries and some of the charity’s trustees.

During the visit, the Princess Royal congratulated the charity on supporting injured veterans by teaching them to sail and gaining new qualifications. She then took a brief car journey to Pendennis Marina for a tour of a replica tall ship donated to the charity by the Prince’s Trust.

 While on board, Princess Anne presented certificates to two former Royal Marines, Dan Fielding and Stephen Spear.

Mr Fielding, 35, said: “It feels a great honour to be presented with my certificate to mark this milestone in my new chosen career. It will be a memory that will stay with me forever and can’t thank the charity enough for believing in me and developing me to this level.”

Squadron Leader (retired) Pascoe added: “We feel privileged to be visited by The Princess Royal, particularly with her awarding two of our recent Yacht Masters their certificates. It was quite a special moment for them and for us, plus a boost to our participants who are preparing for the Round Britain Challenge.”

The Princess Royal also met several beneficiaries preparing to sail around the British Isles in June. The Turn to Starboard Round Britain Challenge 2016 will see a crew of up to 30 veterans – many with little or no sailing experience – sail aboard the Spirit of Falmouth for the complete voyage or smaller sections of the route.

The 2,000-mile expedition is expected to take eight weeks and is planned as a way to help participants gain new skills while highlighting the challenges veterans can face.

Civic dignitaries on hand to meet the Princess Royal included Falmouth mayor John Body and his wife Linda as well as Sarah Newton MP and Sir Dusty Miller.

Getting a shot of Princess Ann smiling.... priceless. 

My photos where published in numerous news papers and websites:

West Briton

Turn to Starboard



Mark Hardaker

Camera used: Sony A7



Lenses used:

Sony FE 28-70mm F3.5-5.6 OSS (don’t underestimate this beautiful lens)

Sony Fe 55mm F1.8 ZA Prime Lens (one of the best primes you will buy)


Purchased @

Flash Used: Metz52 AF Sony multi interface (not native but definitely work a look at)


Full HSS and TTL flash for Sony A7 series