Prince William and Prince Harry have commissioned a statue to be built in honor of their mother Princess Diana to mark the 20th year of her tragic passing. The statue will be a permanent memorial in the public gardens of Kensington Palace in London. The statue will be a reminder of the tremendous work of Diana during her time as a benevolent royal, and it has been fully backed by Queen Elizabeth II.
The Mirror notes words of a Buckingham Palace spokesperson on the subject, stating, “The Queen is aware of the plans and supports the wish of the Duke and Prince Harry to memorialise the life and work of their mother.”
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Prince Harry and Prince William have also released a joint statement, as BBC shares, relaying their intentions for the statue’s construction and reminding about their mother’s tireless work and efforts while in the royal spotlight and beyond, following her divorce from Prince Charles.
“It has been 20 years since our mother’s death and the time is right to recognise her positive impact in the UK and around the world with a permanent statue. Our mother touched so many lives. We hope the statue will help all those who visit Kensington Palace to reflect on her life and her legacy.”
Prince William and Prince Harry have kept the memory of their mother alive over recent years by continuing her work with some charities and humanitarian efforts. The Duke of Cambridge’s wife Kate Middleton has also graced the royal spotlight and kept Diana’s memory alive by taking on initiatives inspired by Diana. The trio has most recently spearheaded the Heads Together Campaign which seeks to eradicate any negative stigma surrounding mental health issues.
As the publication notes, Prince Harry and Prince William have reportedly petitioned for the statue over some years as a symbol of their mother and to commemorate her. The Princes, who were merely boys when their mother died tragically in a car accident 20 years ago, have organized a committee to oversee this project coming to fruition. The Historic Royal Palaces charity will also assist with installation of the statue, and former private secretary Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton has been tasked by the Princes to select the sculptor of the statue.
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John Barnes, a member of the committee and a trustee of Prince Harry’s Invictus Games, spoke about the important project.
“The statue will provide a permanent tribute to one of Kensington Palace’s most memorable residents, Diana, Princess of Wales, in the gardens which she greatly admired. They were both just boys when their mother passed away, but are both now fully grown men and want to honour her in the best way possible. It has taken 20 years for this to finally come to fruition so they are determined it will be a lasting and fitting legacy in what is their official London residence and a place special to them both.”
Much criticism surrounded the treatment of the tragedy following Princess Diana’s death at the young age of 36. Prince William was 15, and Prince Harry merely 12. The sons of the beauty and Prince Charles were just boys, but since maturing to young men, they have made achieving this goal their focus. The Queen herself was the target of criticism immediately following the death of Diana when she refused to fly the flag at half-mast. Fans and royal watchers have also shared an ongoing critical view as to the lack of commemoration Diana received after dying tragically in 1997.
Additional members of the Diana Princess of Wales Statue Committee include Lady Sarah McCorquodale, Diana’s older sister, and the Princess’ dearest friend Julia Samuel, who is also Prince George’s godmother.
[Featured Image by Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images]