The London apartment where Princess Diana lived with her girlfriends before getting engaged to Prince Charles will be receiving an English Heritage blue plaque this year. Diana's plaque will be at her Coleherne Court flat, which she shared with three of her girlfriends, Carolyn Bartholomew, Virginia Pitman, Ann Bolton.
“We are expecting our plaque to Diana, Princess of Wales to be very popular. She was an inspiration and cultural icon to many, raising awareness of issues including landmines and homelessness, and helping to destigmatize illnesses such as HIV, leprosy and depression. It seems fitting that we should erect a plaque commemorating her work and influence in what would have been her 60th year,"Anna Eavis, English Heritage’s curatorial director, said in a statement.
Fans of The Crown will recognize the building as the setting for one of the happiest scenes in season four, when Diana announces her engagement to her friends. Prior to moving to Clarence House the night before the public announcement, Diana was frequently photographed by paparazzi outside the Earls Court (the neighborhood between Chelsea and South Kensington) complex.
"How very lovely that this blue plaque will be going up outside Coleherne Court - thank you, @EnglishHeritage, for commemorating such a very happy place for Diana in this way." Charles Spencer, Diana's brother tweeted.
How very lovely that this blue plaque will be going up outside Coleherne Court - thank you, @EnglishHeritage, for commemorating such a very happy place for Diana in this way. pic.twitter.com/FiDk3ZtLpG
— Charles Spencer (@cspencer1508) April 1, 2021
There are nearly 1,000 blue plaques across London, each commemorating a notable historic figure. The tradition started in 1866 and, like many public memorials, the vast majority (86 percent) of the honorees are men. This is something English Heritage has sought to correct, and this year it will be honoring exclusively women. Crystallographer and peace campaigner Kathleen Lonsdale received the first plaque of 2021 and social reformer Caroline Norton, designer Jean Muir, former slave and campaigner Ellen Craft, barrister Helena Normanton, will also be honored with blue plaques. Diana's blue plaque will be put up later this year.
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