HE is seen as sporting royalty in his own right, but yesterday Sir Roger Bannister was greeted by the Princess Royal at Harris Manchester College, Oxford.

Sir Roger is an honorary fellow of the college and 60 years ago became the first man in the world to break the four-minute-mile barrier.

Before the visit, he said: “This will be the first time Her Royal Highness has visited Harris Manchester, and I’m sure she’ll be fascinated.

“It really is excellent, academically.”

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His wife Lady Moyra added: “We’ve met Princess Anne several times. I would say she’s a very good aquaintance of ours.”

The princess unveiled a plaque in the Mansfield Road college’s Arlosh Hall to commemorate its role in the planning of the D-Day landings 70 years ago when it was the base for one of the Inter-Services Topological Department’s sections.

Annette Duffell, the college’s bursar, said: “Her Royal Highness was here for about an hour and a half and spoke to all our staff and college fellows. She was really nice and she knew a lot about the history of the college. She was charming, very easy.”

Princess Anne officially opened the Soliders of Oxfordshire Museum, in Woodstock, and Oxford University’s new £36m Kennedy Institute Rheumatology, in Headington, on Thursday.


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