Archive for the 'Princess Diana News' Category


Diana trusted wrong people – Elton

Diana, Princess of Wales became "airy fairy" with her friends towards the end of her life, Sir Elton John has claimed.

The singer, who was a close friend of Diana’s, told music channel VH1 he believed she trusted "the wrong people".

He said: "She didn’t trust the people she should have trusted, her true friends. I always thought the people that really felt for her and really were true to her she just was a bit airy fairy towards in the end."


Sir Elton, who performed an emotional re-worked version of his hit Candle in the Wind at the Princess’s funeral in 1997, also said he found out about her death through a fax sent by a friend, offering condolences.

And he told the TV special Me, Myself and I, which was shown on US television on Thursday night, that singing at the funeral was a surreal experience.

He said: "What was going through my mind was ‘Don’t sing a wrong note. Don’t sing the wrong note. Be stoic. Don’t break down and just do it to the best you can possibly do it without showing any emotion whatsoever.’"

Source : UK Press Association


Burrell ‘boasted of sex with Diana’

Paul Burrell’s wife has disassociated herself from claims made by her brother that her husband boasted about having a sexual relationship with Diana, Princess of Wales.

The News of the World reported claims made by the former royal butler’s brother-in-law, Ron Cosgrove(below) that Mr Burrell told him he had a sexual relationship with the Princess.


The 61-year-old furniture dealer said Mr Burrell made the revelation in a pub in Cheshire in 1993, and repeated the boasts a year later at a family party to celebrate wife Maria’s 40th birthday.

Speaking from the family home in Florida, Mrs Burrell said she was "mortified, and hugely embarrassed" by her brother’s claims and disassociated herself "from everything he is reported to have said".


Mr Cosgrove told the News of the World that on a visit to see family in Cheshire in 1993, Mr Burrell asked if they could speak in private. The pair went to the Peal of Bells pub in Holt where, Mr Cosgrove said, Mr Burrell made his claim about Diana.

He told the newspaper: "He clearly had something on his mind. Then during the conversation he suddenly tells me he’s been having a sexual relationship with Princess Diana.

"Paul told me that he’d get a call from Diana in the middle of the night specifically to have sex with her. I told him if it was true I was disgusted with him because he was married to my sister and cheating on her with another woman.


"He just replied ‘Yes, but it IS the Princess’. I was dumbfounded. I couldn’t believe what he was telling me. It was clear he wanted to get all this off his chest for some reason. I’m not sure if it was just to be relieved of the secrecy or simply to brag about it."

Mr Cosgrove said Mr Burrell later came to him in tears, claiming Diana’s demands on him had eased off because she had met and fallen in love with heart surgeon Dr Hasnat Khan.

Maria Burrell, who was supported in making her statement by her other brother, Peter Cosgrove, said: "I am mortified, and hugely embarrassed, at the claims attributed to my brother Ron Cosgrove in the News of the World, and disassociate myself with everything he is reported to have said."

Source : UK Press Association


Paul Burrell’s TV interview

Princess Diana’s former butler is set to give a UK TV interview.

Paul Burrell – who worked for the princess for ten years until her death in 1997 – has refused to return to the UK from his Florida home since his admission that he lied at Diana’s inquest, but now reportedly wants to "set the record straight."

A source revealed to Britain’s Daily Express newspaper: "Paul really feels it’s time he builds bridges in Britain because he knows he managed to alienate the majority of the British public.


"He knows he has made mistakes but also feels he has been treated unfairly. "He wants the chance to be in front of the screen and give his side of things.

He’d want the interview to be filmed in America as he currently has no interest in coming back to the UK but he’d like it to be shown on the BBC and ITV.

"Paul’s people are going to put out a few feelers to see what interest there is." Paul – dubbed Diana’s "rock" – was recently told he would not face perjury charges over his evidence at Diana’s inquest.

Diana famously appeared on ‘Panorama’ following her divorce from Prince Charles to dish the dirt about her marriage.

Source : PR


The Butler Did It : Paul Burrell and his latest money spinner

Paul Burrell is serving up jewels as part of his latest venture.

The ex-butler of Diana Princess of Wales will launch a line of jewellery on Shop NBC this weekend inspired by the late icon’s taste in gems.

Dubbed Effy Signature Range, the line will bow in the U.S. on Saturday.

The television retailer has described the collection as "breathtaking, with regal appeal." Burrell, who lives in Florida, will promote the line with a series of guest appearances on the channel prior to the launch.

The former royal servant, who once described himself as the princess’ rock, is now less in demand in Britain, where news of his jewellery line has fuelled Burrell’s infamy.


The former servant has reportedly netted 10 million pounds, or $19.5 million, since Princess Diana’s death through the sale of his books, appearing in reality television shows and even launching a wine variety — Royal Butler Wine.

Pieces in the jewellery line include an 18-karat Tri-Colour 1.14-carat Diamond Flower Ring retailing at 860 pounds, or $1,699.95, and a white and rose gold 1.85-carat Diamond Flower Pendant with chain for 1,275 pounds, or $2,499.95.

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For those who can’t afford it, the wine is priced more modestly at approximately 6 pounds, or $11, a bottle.

Source : Women’s Wear


Princess Diana’s touching notes to butler to be sold at auction

Deeply personal letters written by Diana, Princess of Wales to one of the Royal Family’s most trusted servants have been disclosed for the first time ahead of an auction of his possessions expected to raise hundreds of thousands of pounds.

In one of the most heartfelt letters – written just seven days after the birth of her first son, Prince William – she thanks William Tallon, commonly known as ‘Backstairs Billy’, for all his "lovely presents" and describes her emotions over the first flush of parenthood.


"We are not sure at the moment what has hit us, except a very strong pair of lungs!," the Princess writes. "Both parents are making little sense, we just seem to spend most of our time gazing at this tiny person!"

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She later adds: "William, you always manage to remember the things that mean so much to me."

The letter is one of eight between the Princess and Mr Tallon which form part of a collection of 694 items expected to fetch more than £200,000 when sold off by auctioneers Reeman Dansie of Colchester, Essex, next month.

The letters disclose the Princess’s thoughts just before her wedding, on becoming pregnant with Prince William and of the chaos of the first few days after his birth. Also included is a heartfelt note from the late Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, thanking him for his "wise leadership".

diana and william

Mr Tallon worked in the Royal household from 1951 to 2002, including 25 years as Steward and Page of the Backstairs.

He was given a lowly position aged 15, a year after writing to King George VI for a job.

Over five decades ‘Backstairs Billy’, as he became known, kept every letter, photograph, gift and memento from his service, including hundreds of photographs, scrapbooks, gifts and medals.

He never sought to profit from his 51 years’ service to the family and took his secrets to the grave. However, it was one of the conditions of his will that the items would be sold after his death and the money passed to the beneficiaries of his estate. He died last November at the age of 72.

It is the letters between Mr Tallon and the Princess which are the most remarkable. In a letter dated 1 July 1981 – just a few weeks before her marriage to the Prince of Wales, the-then Lady Diana Spencer wrote: "I have been thoroughly spoilt…It is well and truly four weeks to go now and I think everyone will be exhausted come the 30th."

Shortly after the wedding she wrote again to ‘Billy’ and his long-term boyfriend, Reginald Wilcock, telling of the last night before the wedding.

diana wedding dress

She wrote: "I cannot thank you enough for showing such extreme kindness to me by putting flowers in my room…I was so thrilled and delighted to see them there and they added to the atmosphere running up to the great day…I adored spending my last night at Clarence House as everyone was extremely kind to me and that I will never forget. With love, Diana."

Of her first pregnancy she wrote: "It goes without saying how delighted we are at the prospect of the PoW [Princess of Wales] expanding in more ways than one! It should make Ascot week exciting."

Auctioneer James Grinter said the letters themselves should fetch between £500 and £1,500.

But he commented: "They are very difficult things to value because they are so personal."

Also of intense interest will be letters from the late Queen Elizabeth, whom he served to her death.

In 1976, she wrote: "I greatly appreciate the wonderful loyalty and service that you have given…and especially all you do for me personally.

"I am deeply grateful for these years of dedicated service and for your wise leadership in happy times and problem days."

A lot of 120 instruction notes gave a fascinating insight into her daily life, he said.

One ordered: "I think that I will take two small bottles of Dubonnet and gin with me this morning, in case it is needed."

Another asked Billy’s help to arrange a picnic: "It is a beautiful day, could we have lunch under the tree? One could have fourteen at the table and four at the small table."

The auctioneer said: "She didn’t do things by halves."

Source : The Daily Telegraph


Burrell to flog Diana diamonds

PRINCESS Diana’s self-styled “Rock” Paul Burrell will again profit from her memory – flogging gems on US shopping TV.

Money-grabbing Burrell, 50, will sell his range of “regal” and “princess-cut” diamond jewellery to viewers of ShopNBC later this week.

The ex-butler is bragging how he helped to design the flashy rocks, costing up to £1,700, based on Diana’s taste.


He told a friend: “Diana wore big formal pieces for royal events. But privately her taste was much more understated. She liked smaller diamonds and simple designs.

“My range will stay true to that and to her – understated but beautiful and eye-catching. I am told it will be very popular in America because of the interest in Diana.”

burrell jewellery

Florida-based Burrell has made £10million from his Diana books and “royal” furniture.

In live ads on Friday and Saturday, he is expected to charm viewers with Diana tales as he peddles his Effy Signature Range.

It includes an 18-carat gold ring with 33 “princess-cut diamonds” for £1,020.

A £1,275 chain and cross features 130 gems in 18-carat white and rose gold.

And an 18-carat tri-colour diamond flower ring costs £860.

At the Diana inquest in January, Burrell claimed the princess didn’t like the diamond and sapphire engagement ring given to her by Prince Charles. He said: “She felt it was a little too big and gaudy.”

Last month it was revealed he will not be prosecuted for perjury despite confessing he lied to the inquest.

Source : The Sun



ITV 3 is to hold a ‘Royal Weekend’ of special programmes and films dedicated to the Royal Family.

Beginning on Friday June 13th ’08 with ‘The Duke: A Portrait of Prince Phillip’ followed by the first in the two part TV series Henry VIII, starring Ray Winstone portraying the serial husband through his tempestuous 38-year-reign.

Saturday June 14th features ‘Bertie & Elizabeth’, an affectionate portrayal of a Royal marriage. This enchanting feature-length portrait of the life of Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, focuses on her courtship by the shy, future George VI (known as Bertie)


This is followed on Sunday June 15th by The Queen, starring Dame Helen Mirren in her Oscar winning role as Queen Elizabeth II.


Also on Sunday June 15th, is the captivating drama ‘Whatever Love Means’, starring Laurence Fox and Olivia Poulet.

whatever love means 

It tells the early romantic story of a young Prince Charles, heir to the British throne, who found a warmth and love in feisty debutante Camilla Shand that he’d never experienced before and wasn’t prepared to lose.


Diana Concert funds to help young leprosy sufferers in India

The Leprosy Mission is to invest the £200,000 allocated from last year’s Concert for Diana in its six vocational training centres in India that are enabling people marginalised by leprosy or disability gain the right skills for employment.

Hundreds of thousands of young people in India are socially excluded because of leprosy or disability, the charity said.

The Leprosy Mission’s vocational training centres are helping over 800 of them every year by teaching employable skills which benefit them financially and improve their social status.

Rupert Haydock, National Director for The Leprosy Mission England and Wales, says, "We are very grateful to Princes William and Harry and the Advisory Board of the Concert for Diana for this support.


"The Mission now has the opportunity to make these six centres accessible to many more young people with leprosy-related disabilities."

Around a quarter of the funds will provide disability-friendly access for students at each centre with the provision of ramps and modified bathroom facilities. Wheelchairs will also be provided for students requiring them. In addition, the funds will pay for desperately needed equipment for a variety of trades including welding, motor mechanics, tailoring and computing.

The remainder will be used to run The Leprosy Mission’s vocational training centre at Vizianagaram, Andhra Pradesh. Staff at the centre provide counselling support for students and their parents, who in some cases have experienced severe social exclusion. Students, who come from miles around, are given training and support to find work or start their own businesses.

Mohanta, leprosy affected, works in the Embroidery Workshop of the VTC. TLM's VTC in Vizianagaram provides vocational training to nearly 90 boys and 50 girls from Andrha Predesh and neighboring states. 90% of the students have been affected by leprosy - either self or parent. The other students are physically disabled or sent by a local NGO.

At the VTC, students receive training in dress making, computers, welding, auto mechanics, electrical repair, bag making and embroidery. The majority are voracious about their learning. When asked, what is the best part of life at the VTC, many students respond - the discipline and time management training.

Over 1,200 students have graduated from the VTC, and approximately 1,000 have been placed in local businesses.

Mr Haydock said the training projects had been awarded the funds because Princess Diana, who was The Leprosy Mission’s patron, "particularly wanted to restore dignity and hope to people affected by leprosy".

"Our vocational training centres strive to continue this legacy today," he said.

Source : Christian


Diana’s golden gift sold at auction

A gold necklace given as a gift by Diana, Princess of Wales to her medium has been sold for nearly £14,000, more than double its top estimate.

The necklace, which was expected to fetch £4,000 to £6,000, is accompanied by a handwritten letter from Diana to Rita Rogers, dated just weeks before she died.

The letter reads: "Dearest Rita, this necklace was made for you and comes with so much love to a very special lady with an extraordinary gift. From x Diana x."


The 18 carat necklace by Van Cleef & Arpels was offered at London auction house Christie’s in South Kensington. It sold for £13,750 to a buyer who wanted to remain anonymous, Christie’s said.

The money will be split between Mrs Rogers’ four daughters, with a donation from the proceeds given to a local hospice in Diana’s memory.

Mrs Rogers said previously: "Diana was a dear friend who I miss greatly. "But she wasn’t sentimental about possessions, and I know she wouldn’t want her gift to cause a problem between my girls when I’m gone, so it is with great reluctance that I have decided to sell it and use the proceeds to good effect."


Mrs Rogers became friends with Diana from 1994 onwards and the letter to her is dated August 13 1997.

The necklace, designed as a series of polished yellow gold interlocking heart motif links, is signed VCA and hallmarked 1996.

During Diana’s inquest, Mrs Rogers said she "didn’t have a very good feeling" when she spoke to her hours before her death.

She told her inquest that she urged the Princess to come home from Paris just seven hours before the crash in which she was killed. Mrs Rogers claimed that Diana’s parting shot had been: "I’ll be careful Rita, I promise."

Source : Press Association


Anything but ballet

The Kirov’s tour to Manchester and Birmingham last month was meant to be a special event for UK ballet fans – a rare chance to see the great Mariinsky company outside London. Yet the theatres were half-empty. One significant turn-off was the ticket prices, which had been pitched greedily high, with top seats going for £95.

But the other was the decision not to open the Kirov’s arrival at each city with Swan Lake, or any other obvious classic. Instead the company were dancing Balanchine’s Jewels – hardly a scary novelty but apparently not well enough known to generate full houses.

It’s hard to see how this culture of conservatism is ever going to shift, and how the general ballet public will be persuaded to want new work. One route, taken by the shamelessly entrepreneurial Peter Schaufuss, has been to sell his new productions on the back of celebrity culture. Who needs the easy-recognition factor of Swan Lake or Sleeping Beauty when you’ve got Princess Diana as the heroine of your new ballet or, in the case of Schaufuss’s most recent production, the diva trio of Judy Garland, Edith Piaf and Marlene Dietrich opportunistically shoehorned into the same piece.

diana diana276

London gets to see Schaufuss’s Divas on June 19, but a week earlier English National Ballet premiers a production that goes down the same showbiz route. Strictly Gershwin has been created for the arena-sized space of the Albert Hall and will feature a cast of 60 dancers orchestrated into mass ballet, tap and ballroom numbers as well as a live band headed by the veteran cabaret singer Barbara Cook.

There is nothing wrong with ballet companies wanting to have fun. There is nothing wrong with them putting on the occasional splashy event to buffer against budgetary crisis. But no one should fool themselves that this will solve the image crisis affecting the art form as a whole. Pretending that ballet isn’t really ballet, that it’s just an upmarket sister to Strictly Come Dancing, won’t lure any new viewers into the theatre the next time the Kirov dance Balanchine.

Source :


April 2014
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