Anorak News | Di Is Cast

Di Is Cast

by | 9th, July 2004

‘FIRST the commemorative gutter and now this. News that the Princess Diana shrine at Althrop is to shut hits us like a battered white Fiat Uno between the eyes.

‘So, I’ll get a fiver for the daisies…’

Quite rightly it’s front-page news in the Sun, where Diana’s brother Earl Spencer is said to be planning to stop making an exhibition of his sister and shut up shop.

How can this be? We at Anorak pay our £10.50-a-head every year, and clutching our tickets make the pilgrimage on our hands and knees to see Diana’s final resting place and the museum dedicated to her memory.

We’ve shed a tear over Diana’s red school uniform, her tuck box and her school reports and we’ve stood transfixed for hours in front of a wall in which a cine-film of a young Diana plays on a continuous loop.

But what we failed to notice was that, had we turned around, no-one else would have been there.

Visitor numbers have fallen sharply from their 1997 peak when 150,000 pilgrims made the journey to the Spencers’ Northamptonshire estate, and last year only 80,000 believers made the trip.

And this year things have slumped to such an extent that you don’t even need to pre-book; just rock up on the day and entry is guaranteed.

But still, why should it close? Surely a high thinker like the Earl could come up with ways to liven it up.

Or, indeed, deaden it up. Why not introduce the Ghost of Diana Changing Room in which a spooky Di – shrouded in a cerise pink pashmina with matching hat and gloves – floats eerily out of the ether in a mocked-up Harvey Nichols stall?

Or the Diana Rollercoaster, where fans of the Princess can relive the ups and downs of Diana’s life, plunging downwards as she falls down the stairs, before soaring up to the skies as her spirit if sent to shop among the angels?

Of course, this may be considered to be in bad taste, particularly by the good Earl.

Much classier to just let punters pay over a tenner to gaze at Diana’s home movies at Althorp – a place where, as the Mail reminds us, Earl Spencer declined to let his sister live when she was alive.’

Posted: 9th, July 2004 | In: Tabloids Comment | TrackBack | Permalink