Sixteen years since the tragic death of Princess Diana on August 21, 1997, those she left behind strive to continue her legacy of love, zest for life and compassion.
Prince William continues to generate his mother’s particular brand of magic in support of her charities, aided by his wife Kate Middleton and brother Harry. The Duke and Duchess have also just delighted the nation by welcoming the child who would have been her grandson.
Her great love Hasnat Khan has also found himself in the headlines because of the release of a new film telling their love story.
In tribute to the Princess whose power to fascinate has never died, ! takes a look at 10 interesting facts about her life.
• She failed her O levels twice and often joked about her poor academic record.
• Following the divorce of her parents Earl Spencer and his wife Frances, Diana’s father was awarded custody of Diana and her three siblings.
Princess Diana pictured with her brother Earl Spencer
• Diana’s maternal grandmother Lady Fermoy was lady-in-waiting to Charles’ grandmother, The Queen Mother.
• For her engagement, Lady Diana selected a large £30,000 (£94,800 in today’s terms) by Garrard. The sparkler consisted of 14 solitaire diamonds elegantly surrounding a 12-carat oval blue Ceylon sapphire set in 18-carat white gold. It now sits on Kate Middleton’s finger, of course.
Princess Diana and Prince Charles announcing their engagement
• Her wedding to Prince Charles on July 29, 1981 was broadcast in 74 countries and watched by 750 million people worldwide. Her funeral 16 years later had 2.5 billion viewers.
• The Princess counted Gianni Versace, George Michael, Bryan Adams and Elton John among her close friends.
Diana and Charles’s wedding was watched by 750million people worldwide
• Diana once invited the supermodel Cindy Crawford to Buckingham Palace for dinner when a young Prince William had a secret crush on the model.
• She supported over 100 charities, including the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, which won the Nobel Peace Prize a few months after her death.