A new documentary will shed light on Queen Elizabeth II’s final days.

The Princess Royal told the documentary that the Queen felt it would be “difficult” if she died at Balmoral but was persuaded to step back from the “decision making process”.

The BBC documentary, Charles III: The Coronation Year, sees Anne reveal the late Queen’s thought process during her last days in an interview.

Speaking about the accession of her brother the King, Anne said: “I’m not sure that anybody can really prepare themselves for that kind of change.”

Echo: The documentary takes a look back at Charles' first year as KingThe documentary takes a look back at Charles' first year as King (Image: Sarah Meyssonnier/PA)

Anne, Elizabeth’s only daughter, said it was “serendipity” she was at Balmoral before her mother’s death and she “weirdly felt a sense of relief” when the Imperial State Crown was removed from her coffin – symbolic of her role passing to Charles.

The princess praises Queen Camilla for her “outstanding” understanding of her role as consort and the difference it makes to the King who she says is learning new things about the institution of the monarchy.

How to watch Charles III: The Coronation Year

The documentary is 90 minutes long and will be available to watch on Boxing Day (December 26) on BBC One and BBC iPlayer at 6.50pm.

It is narrated by Helena Bonham Carter and features contributions from Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and close friends.

It also gives a behind-the-scenes look at rehearsals for the coronation.

In the documentary, Anne speaks about her mother’s final days, saying: “I think there was a moment when she felt that it would be more difficult if she died at Balmoral. And I think we did try and persuade her that that shouldn’t be part of the decision making process.”

She concluded with a laugh: “So I hope she felt that that was right in the end, because I think we did.”

Queen Elizabeth II died peacefully at Balmoral in Scotland on September 8, 2022 aged 96 after reigning for 70 years, making her the UK’s longest-serving monarch.

The Queen's life in pictures

At the end of her life, it appears the late Queen was still concerned with duty and others, not wanting her passing in Scotland to cause added issues for those implementing London Bridge – the codename for the arrangements for her lying in state, vigils and a grand state funeral.

There were different plans in place for if the Queen had died at any of her other main royal residencies from Sandringham to Windsor Castle and even overseas.

The arrangements for Scotland were given the codename Operation Unicorn.

In the documentary, the voice of Huw Edwards is heard announcing the Queen’s death on the BBC. The broadcaster has been suspended by the corporation while it conducts an investigation into allegations made against him earlier this year.

Anne tells the documentary: “My mother’s funeral in St George’s, he takes the crown off the coffin – I rather weirdly felt a sense of relief, somehow that’s it, finished. That responsibility being moved on.”

The royal family watched as crown jeweller Mark Appleby removed the crown, sceptre and orb from Queen Elizabeth’s coffin before it was lowered into the royal vault.

What has Charles’ first year as King looked like?

The past 12 months have been a period of momentous change for Charles who has completed a number of firsts from carrying out his first overseas state visit to Germany to hosting South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa for the inaugural inward state visit of his reign.

Charles waited all his life to fulfil his destiny and be crowned King and at the age of 75 his Carolean era is in its infancy compared with the seven decades of the late Queen’s reign.

Echo: The Imperial State Crown was removed from the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II during the Committal Service at St George’s Chapel, Windsor CastleThe Imperial State Crown was removed from the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II during the Committal Service at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle (Image: Joe Giddens/PA)

Talking about the succession, Anne goes on to say: “To be honest I’m not sure that anybody can really prepare themselves for that kind of change… not easily. And then the change happens and you go ‘OK, I now have to get on with it’.

“Monarchy is a 365 days a year occupation, it doesn’t stop because you change monarchs, for whatever reason.”

Viewers will see the King giving a speech at the state banquet staged in honour of President Ramaphosa during his visit last autumn.

Anne says: “It’s a big operation, the amount of entertaining is much bigger than even they recognised, but I think my brother is learning things about the organisation that he perhaps was very vaguely aware of before, and he’s enjoying that too.”

Candid moments in the build up to the coronation are shown in the documentary with rehearsals filmed showing the King relaxed and joking with Archbishop Welby and his son and heir the Prince of Wales.

Camilla is seen by Charles’ side through much of the documentary and the princess says about the Queen: “I’ve known her a long time, off and on.

“Her understanding of her role and how much difference it makes to the King has been absolutely outstanding, and this role is not something she would have been a natural for, but she does it really well.

“And she provides that change of speed and tone, she’s equally modern.”

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Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and his wife are shown spending time at Balmoral as the King’s guests.

Sunak says: “I think it’s been an incredibly successful year.

“I mean, I’ve had the pleasure of, and the privilege of, spending time with him over that year, and I’ve just seen him do it in his own way, as of course he should do, and do it brilliantly.”