”There was more genuine insight in 10 minutes here than in any other royal documentary of recent memory.”

“Watching this film of Anne’s at work over the course of a year, seeing the scale of it all close up, you wonder how she can have got to 70 without a whole library of programmes like this. Programmes like this often have civilians fawning about what meeting a royal meant to them and this was no exception. However, it felt unusually authentic. Yes, it was a clear PR exercise, but given that the subject herself would rather die before gilding any reputational lilies, especially her own, she emerged almost by accident as perhaps the great Windsor hope.”

Ben Dowell, The Times

“Royal documentaries come along every week, featuring an array of historians and journalists offering next to no insight into their subject. But this was an exception to the rule. It featured a series of candid interviews with the Princess herself, who gamely allowed the cameras to follow her around and chatted about everything from her portrayal on Netflix’s The Crown to the 1974 kidnap attempt. It also showed her to be witty and wise, with an easy laugh. Even the most ardent republican would have to confess a sneaking admiration for her sense of duty and formidable work ethic. There was more genuine insight in 10 minutes here than in any other royal documentary of recent memory.”

Anita Singh, The Telegraph

“This was an efficient jaunt through the Princess’s life, from her charity work, military endeavours and Olympic career to the kidnapping attempt on the Mall in 1974. Nothing new, then, although there were plenty of amusing anecdotes to give the whole thing a bit of sparkle.”

Rupert Hawksley, The i

“This first instalment (of six) took us from Salamanca to Canfranc, via Ávila, Madrid and Zaragoza, and provided its usual mix of travelogue, history and – this time especially – Who Do You Think You Are? as the hour and the miles unfolded. The scenery was unrelentingly, heart-swellingly beautiful. He is at his best and most comfortable with the ex cathedra element of presenting. There is always the slight impression that the involvement of other people – even though they are usually archivists and experts there to unpack a historical moment or explain the significance of an artefact – feels like an intrusion on his time.”

Lucy Mangan, The Guardian

“The former defence secretary has taken a staid format – a travelogue visiting places recommended by Bradshaw’s Guides – and turned it into a camp delight. He is back in a new series and continuing to dress like a human Liquorice Allsort. Portillo has now visited most of Europe, but the producers have got around this problem by sending him back with a modern edition of Bradshaw’s, dated 1936. He began in Spain, a vision in lemon yellow and deepest tangerine.”

Anita Singh, The Telegraph

“Standing in front of Guernica, Picasso’s response to the bombing of the Basque town by Franco’s forces in 1937, Portillo was moved to talk about… himself. He explained how events at Guernica had persuaded the British government to accept refugees, which in a roundabout way led to the union of his mother and father. There was a pause, perhaps a beat too long, before Rosario Peiró, head of collections, replied: “That’s very nice.” This is the problem with Portillo as a travel guide. Armed with his copy of Bradshaw’s Handbook (for this series, the edition from 1936, the year the Spanish Civil War broke out), he’s well-informed and lively company but he will rather galumph about, often misreading the mood.”

Rupert Hawksley, The i