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The Funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales

The Funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales

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The Funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales

The funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales, on September 6, 1997 was a defining moment for England. Gone was the notion of the “stiff upper lip” or the famous “English reserve”. Diana’s sudden death in a car crash in Paris shocked the nation and the subsequent public outpourings of grief made us look at ourselves differently. More than a million people lined the route of her funeral cortege from Kensington Palace to Westminster Abbey and on to her family home in Northamptonshire. 43 books of condolence were signed at Kensington Palace within days of her death, and the floral tributes threatened to engulf the palace gates. Just how far this image of “a nation united in grief” was actually the case has been questioned, however. Many television reports focused on the mourning as a way of filling air time without having to spend too long on the details of the crash. What is not disputed is that more than 2.5 billion people watched the funeral worldwide in the largest live broadcast the BBC had ever undertaken, uniting the international community in a way few people have ever achieved.

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Your comments

The event had a huge effect on most people at the time.

Liz Doyle


The death of Diana, Princess of Wales, was a tragedy. She had shown more kindness and love towards the ordinary person in the street, both here and abroad, than any other member of the Royal family. The millions who turned out for her funeral proved she was loved more dearly than other people wouild like us to believe. What a lovely lady. Truly an icon of our time.
Joe


The utter hypocrisy of the faux emotions I overheard at the time make this a preposterous nomination. I heard one man say to his friend "I didn't cry when my wife died, but I cried when Diana died". What a nation of emotional coffins are we that we care more for a representation of the superiority of wealth and privilege than our own closest relations?
Dan Carins


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I nominate the red pillar box.

Donna Spencer

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