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When Princess Diana visited Luxembourg
Luxembourg

When Princess Diana visited Luxembourg

31.08.2017 From our online archive
On a bright sunny day, a British Royal Airforce aircraft landed at Luxembourg Airport. The date was September 17, 1993, the time 12:15pm, as Princess Diana stepped out of the plane in Findel.

On a bright sunny day, a British Royal Airforce aircraft landed at Luxembourg Airport. The date was September 17, 1993, the time 12:15pm, as Princess Diana stepped out of the plane in Findel.

Diana had come to the Grand Duchy to take part in the inauguration of an exhibition "Britain in Luxembourg" in Kirchberg at the trade fair, near to where Luxexpo now stands.

The first stop for the princess though, was the British Embassy where she was greeted as the guest of honour. She sat down to have lunch there together with Prince Henri at the time, now the Grand Duke.

"Queen of Hearts"

It was then on to Kirchberg where the exhibition was declared open by Diana and Henri before the handshakes began. One of them was with the City's Mayor, Lydie Polfer, the first time she held the post. "She really had a lot of presence," she recalled, in an interview with Wort back in 1993."Everyone was jostling to try to see the princess, but she was very relaxed.”

The "Queen of Hearts" as Diana became known, continued the busy day's programme with a visit to the St. Joseph Institute in Betzdorf, where people with disabilities lived, and then to Syrdall Castle, a therapeutic rehabilitation centre for addicts near Manternach.

In the evening, Princess Diana was invited to dinner at Senningen Castle by Prime Minister Jacques Santer.

Well-known Luxembourg chef Lea Linster prepared the big meal. "It was a great honour for me to cook for her," recalls the Michelin-starred chef. "She had a rather good appetite, although she was rather thin."

Princess Diana then returned to Britain just after dinner. Her plane took off from Findel airport bound for London at 9:50pm.

(Adam Walder, adam.walder@wort.lu, +352 49939721)