We don’t usually make quilts for birthday presents but when asked to make a 70th birthday present as a gift from the Australian Defence Force,  Royal Australian Corps of Signals and the Royal Australian Corps of Transport, how could we say no, especially when the recipient was none other than Her Royal Highness, Princess Anne (HRH).  HRH is the Colonel in Chief for the Royal Australian Corps of Signals (RA Sigs) and the Royal Australian Corps of Transport (RACT). 

What a privilege. 

As often happens with Aussie Hero Quilts, this quilt was a joint effort.  The quilt top was completed by Su J from South Australia, using embroideries completed by Kerri B, from Sydney, and Inge C from South Australia.  Once the top was completed it was passed to Philomena who quilted and completed it. 

As soon as it was completed, it was carried by safe hand to Canberra where it was photographed before being sent on its way to England. 

The presentation was conducted in a COVID safe manner with Corps Commanders, BRIG’s Greg Novak (Signals Corps) and Jason Walk (RACT), chatting to HRH via Zoom for about 30 minutes. 

BRIG Novak sent an email after the presentation which said in part: 

“After initial introductions and birthday wishes, the conversation was both wide ranging and engaging. It was very apparent that HRH truly values her ties to the ADF.

The quilt was hanging in the background of HRH’s shot for the duration of the call and she commented several times on the unique nature of the gift and the thought that had gone into the design. More generally, HRH spoke very positively about the concept behind the quilts and how she could see such a presentation being helpful for those who have served operationally, particularly for reminding them of their comrades, unit ties, and other positive experiences from their service. I am paraphrasing somewhat, but my key take away was that HRH genuinely understood why AHQ exists and how important their support is to serving ADF members. I advised I would pass on the above comments specifically as I was sure all those from AHQ involved in getting this gift to HRH would greatly appreciate these sentiments.

Thank you all, for everything. This was a very significant event for the Corps and the wider ADF and I am very humbled to have been part of it.”

Air Marshal Leo Davies AO, CSC, Chairman of the Aussie Hero Quilts Board, and BRIG Greg Novak

BRIG’s Greg Novak (Signals Corps) and Jason Walk (RACT)

During the zoom call with HRH

Su J with the quilt top 

I know it is not easy to read the text on the photos but we can’t publish high res copies of the pictures of the photos take too long to download for those without high speed internet. 

The ADF Badge, flanked by sprigs of wattle

I know it is hard to read the text so here is a transcript.

Presented to

The Princess Royal


members of the Australian Defence Force

to mark her 70th birthday

and in recognition of her longstanding contribution as

Colonel in Chief


The Royal Australian Corps of Signals


The Royal Australian Corps of Transport

The presentation patch was flanked by TAC symbols from both corps.

Units from each Corps, RASIGS above and RACT below, were listed on the quilt along with their Corps badge. The Corps colours were also incorporated in the quilt. 

It was a privilege to be involved in acknowledging Her Royal Highness, Princess Anne’s 70th birthday and a pleasure to be asked by the ADF and the two corps to assist.  

Till next time…. keep spreading the word and happy stitching everyone! 

Jan-Maree xx  

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