Prince Harry leads Diana tributes

Posted on Aug 31, 2007

Prince Harry leads Diana tributes
Prince Harry has told a service to mark the 10th anniversary of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, that she was "the best mother in the world".

Family and friends joined Princes William and Harry for the service at Guards' Chapel near Buckingham Palace.

Harry told the congregation, which included the Queen, Prince Philip and Prince Charles: "She made us and so many other people happy."

The Bishop of London said it was now time to "let Diana rest in peace".

The Right Reverend Dr Richard Chartres, said the princess's memory should no longer be used to score points, and urged: "Let it end here."

'Love and gratitude'

Harry, who was 12 when his mother was killed, said her death was "indescribably shocking and sad", and changed his life and that of his brother forever.

He added: "When she was alive we completely took for granted her unrivalled love of life, laughter, fun and folly.

"We both think of her every day. We speak about her and laugh together at all the memories."

Prince William, who was 15 when Diana died, gave a reading from St Paul's letter to the Ephesians which asked for inner strength.

Diana's sister, Lady Sarah McCorquodale, also gave a reading.

The service included Diana's favourite classical music by composers Rachmaninov and Mozart and four hymns, concluding with Diana's favourite, I Vow To Thee, My Country.

The service also included two prayers written by Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his predecessors Tony Blair and John Major were accompanied by their wives to the service.

The Duchess of Cornwall was invited to the hour-long memorial but decided not to attend, saying her presence would be a distraction.

Former members of the princess's staff, all of the bridesmaids and page boys from her 1981 wedding, and over 110 representatives of charities and organisations with which she was associated were also on the guest list.

Earlier, Harrods owner Mohamed Al Fayed, whose son Dodi died in the crash alongside the princess, laid flowers at a shrine he has built at the London store and held a two-minute silence.

Other memorial services for the princess are to be held at venues across the UK, including Manchester, Bristol, Aberdeen and Cardiff.

Princess Diana
When she was alive we completely took for granted her unrivalled love of life, laughter, fun and folly
Prince Harry

Hundreds of people are expected to attend the Manchester service - at 1630 BST on Friday - which will include readings, a blessing and music which was played at the princess's funeral.

National grief

Admirers of the late princess have tied flowers and cards to the gates of Kensington Palace - her former London residence - as they did in 1997 after her death.

Members of the public have also left bouquets and gifts outside Althorp, where Diana is buried, at the gate of Sandringham estate in Norfolk, where she was born, and near the Eternal Flame monument by the tunnel in Paris where she was killed.

Princess Diana died, aged 36, along with her companion Dodi Al Fayed, 42, and chauffeur Henri Paul, when the Mercedes they were in crashed in the Pont de l'Alma tunnel on 31 August 1997.

The princess's death provoked an unprecedented outpouring of national grief, with hundreds of thousands gathering to mourn outside Kensington Palace, where they left a sea of floral tributes.

Thousands more later lined the route of her funeral procession.

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