Princess Anne's husband Sir Timothy Laurence takes on impressive new role

Sir Timothy and Princess Anne on royal balcony
Sir Timothy and Princess Anne (Getty)

Congratulations are in order for Princess Anne's husband Sir Timothy Laurence!

The retired Royal Navy officer, 68, has taken on an impressive new role as patron of the International Maritime Rescue Federation (IMRF), the world's leading organisation for developing and improving maritime search and rescue capabilities.

The IMRF, which was founded in 1924, has been working hard over the years to prevent the loss of life in the world's waters. It was granted non-governmental consultative status in 1985 and was later registered as an independent charity in 2007.

Sir Timothy is following in the footsteps of Sir Efthimios Mitropoulos, the Secretary-General Emeritus of the International Maritime Organization, who stepped down earlier this year after more than ten years in the role.

Princess Anne and Sir Timothy Laurence at Royal Ascot
Sir Timothy has taken on a new role (Getty)

In his new position, Sir Timothy will help to promote the incredible work of the IMRF and maritime SAR organisations around the world.

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Speaking about his new venture, he said: "It is an honour to be appointed the new Patron of the IMRF, and I look forward to working closely with the organisation, its members and SAR personnel worldwide to advance the cause of safety at sea."

Meanwhile, Jacob Tas, Chair of the IMRF, said: "I am delighted that Sir Tim Laurence has accepted our invitation to become the new Patron of the IMRF.

Tim Laurence smiling in a suit at Zara and Mike's nuptials
Sir Timothy is a retired Royal Navy officer (Getty)

"His tenure at the UK's Royal Navy and his dedication to public service means he will be a fantastic supporter of the IMRF's global work and the critical importance of maritime SAR organisations globally."

The late Queen's former equerry has enjoyed an illustrious career in the UK's Royal Navy. He has taken on a plethora of important roles including Deputy Chairman of the RNLI Board and Chairman of the Operations Committee of the UK's Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

Sir Timothy in his Royal Navy uniform
Sir Timothy in his Royal Navy uniform (Getty)

Princess Anne met her husband in 1986 on the Royal Yacht Britannia when Sir Timothy was serving as a commander in the Royal Navy.

During their time together, the couple formed a close friendship and exchanged "personal letters" which were reportedly stolen in 1989.

princess anne and sir tim at royal ascot
The couple wed in 1992 (Getty)

Following Princess Anne's separation from her first husband, Mark Phillips, Anne and Timothy made their debut as an official couple at the Royal Caledonian Ball.

The duo enjoyed a whirlwind romance, with Sir Timothy popping the question not long after with a dazzling sapphire and diamond ring.

Princess Anne attends the QIPCO King George Day at Ascot QIPCO King George Day, Ascot Racecourse, Ascot, Berkshire
The couple enjoyed a whirlwind romance (David Hartley/Shutterstock)

They went on to get married at Crathie Kirk church in Scotland in December 1992 in front of just 30 guests. Unlike the Church of England at the time, the Church of Scotland considered marriage to be an ordinance of religion rather than a sacrament and permitted the remarriage of divorced persons under certain circumstances.

On her big day, Princess Anne looked breathtaking in a high-neck midi dress which she paired with a chic white jacket and black court shoes. Sir Timothy, meanwhile, looked ultra-suave in his Royal Navy uniform.