Letters written by Princess Diana to close friends sold at Cornwall auction for £145,550
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A collection of 32 letters penned by late Princess Diana have been sold at an auction for a whopping £145,500. The correspondence documents the last two years of the princess’ life, before her death in 1997.
Sold at Lay’s Auctioneers in Penzance, Cornwall, the letters were written by Diana to her two close friends Susie and Tarik Kassem, who have held onto the letters for more than 25 years. But feeling they didn’t want to burden their children and grandchildren, the couple decided to sell the letters to support some of Diana and Susie’s favourite charities.
The letters show the feelings of Lady Diana over a 20 month period between the summer of 1995 and the spring of 1997. One letter, dated May 20 1996, shows her fear of her phone being bugged.
In the letter, which sold for £23,000, Diana wrote: "If I had known a year ago what I’d experience going through this divorce, I’d never have consented - it’s desperate and ugly."
According to Lay’s Auctioneers, the letters “touch on the enormous stress she was experiencing during periods of very public heartbreak”, while displaying her “strength of character and her generous and witty disposition shine through”.
The 32 cards and letters sold at the auction were predicted to sell for £90,000, but sold for considerably more. A letter penned at Christmas 1996, in which the princess expressed her dislike of the holiday, sold for £26,000, more than £20,000 more than expected, and was sold for the largest sum of any of the correspondence.
A Lay’s Auctioneers spokesperson told the BBC: "She was someone who was very open and very loving to her friends and it shines through in her letters, particularly to people she was obviously very fond of and close to. It gives a lovely insight into the woman and she obviously was a very special loving person."