She laughed and chatted with carers as they carved pumpkin lanterns and learned circus skills during a respite day at the Somerset resort on October 31st 2012.

The Princess Royal, President of the Carers Trust, who was cheered by families enjoying half-term at the resort, unveiled a plaque to recognise the support Butlins gives the charity.

Butlins’ staff have raised £250,000 over the past five years and offered work experience to carers who have had to look after a sick or disabled family member or friend.

About 75 carers and their families were invited yesterday to enjoy Butlins’ fun activities including circus skills, arts and crafts, face-painting and story-telling.

Resort director Julian Highfield said: “This very special visit by HRH, The Princess Royal, means a huge amount to the team here.

“Butlins has enjoyed working with the Carers Trust and is proud to have raised almost a quarter of a million pounds. We have also been fortunate to be able to offer some carers the opportunity to join us on work experience in a number of departments here on resort.”

Carers Trust Ambassador Carole Cochrane said: “The Princess Royal is a very active President and having her support raises awareness for a charity supporting the six million carers in the UK.

“The carers invited to Butlins today have had a fantastic time, meeting the Princess, enjoying lunch and the resort’s facilities, a lovely day out which is something they don’t get very often.”

Tutsi Muchanyuka, 29, from Hackney, London – who personally thanked the Princess for helping carers – looked after his mother for 11 years up until her death last year. He was supported by the Trust and has now been given a job by Butlins in Bognor Regis after work experience.

He said: “Today has been so exciting for all the carers here. The Trust gave me support in so many areas. It gave me my self-confidence back and the boost I needed to move my life forward.”

For more details on Butlins www.butlins.com