'It's heavenly up here' - Princess Diana's letters masked her marriage troubles

Earlier this week, we reported that Kate Middleton's wedding dress was to be exhibited this summer with the Royal couple's wedding cake also being shown.

Intriguingly, a piece of the wedding cake from her late mother-in-law Princess Diana's marriage to Prince Charles (created by Belgian pastry chef S. G. Sender - known as 'cakemaker to the kings') is also to be exhibited at the International Arts and Antiques Fair in Olympia, London.

Chares and Diana's wedding was watched by 750 million people

The coincidence is notable given that despite the great surge of interest in the next generation of Royals in the form of Wills and Kate (or the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge as they now are), the fascination with Princess Diana (which has seen her autograph multiply in value) shows no sign of receding.

A set of Diana's Christmas cards was one of the key lots on the first outing of British Channel 4 TV Show Four Rooms (which specialises in selling a great range of collectibles), although the owner didn't make a particularly well-advised sale.

Also this week Reeman Dansie has announced that it is offering a series of letters Diana wrote to Margaret Hodge, a retired school principal with whom she worked at a Kindergarden before her marriage.

The letters are striking in that they consistently have an upbeat, cheery tone, indicating a very happy marriage, through periods which Diana was later to describe as having a less fairytale-like-experience. Presumably she was simply putting a brave face on things.

Notable examples include one from her honeymoon, including: "I went to Highgrove a couple of weeks ago to put pressure on basically to see it finished by the end of October! It honestly won't look smart.

"Just a cosy nest for Mr & Mrs Wales to roost, with bright colours, of course! Its [sic] heavenly up here, just having the opportunity to do what you like & walk for miles - I've vanished down many a hole - the husband having not realised - typical.

"We are touring Wales for 3 days at the end of next month, which will be quite something. I only hope I can survive it! I ought to finish now & give a hug to my other half!"

Diana later indicated that she was already suffering badly with bulimia on her honeymoon. Other letters are written with similar unalloyed joy, glossing over her post-natal depression, self-harm and the affairs between herself and James Hewitt as well as Charles's with Camilla.

Reeman Dansie's auction takes place on June 21 in Colchester, UK with worldwide interest expected.


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