While Prince William and Prince Harry live on different continents these days, the brothers are still planning to honor their late mother Princess Diana with a permanent memorial. On Friday, Kensington Palace released a statement regarding the Princess of Wales’ statue, which was first announced in 2017. “The statue that Prince William and Prince Harry have commissioned to commemorate their mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, will be installed next year on what would have been her 60th Birthday,” the statement read (via HOLA! USA’s sister brand HELLO!). “The Princes hope that the statue will help all those who visit Kensington Palace to reflect on their mother’s life and her legacy.”
The statue was commissioned to mark the twentieth anniversary of Diana’s tragic 1997 death and to recognize the Princess’ “positive impact in the UK and around the world.” Per Kensington Palace, the installation was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but will now take place on July 1, 2021. The news comes ahead of the 23rd anniversary of Diana’s passing on Monday, Aug. 31.
Ian Rank-Broadley, whose portrait of the Queen appears on all UK coins, was picked by the Princes to create the statue. The Duke of Cambridge and the Duke of Sussex, who now resides in California with wife Meghan Markle , announced the project prior to the 20th anniversary of their mother’s death. At the time, Kensington Palace noted that Harry and William convened a committee to commission and privately raise funds for the creation of the statue.
“It has been twenty years since our mother’s death and the time is right to recognise her positive impact in the UK and around the world with a permanent statue,” the brothers said in a joint statement back in 2017. “Our mother touched so many lives. We hope the statue will help all those who visit Kensington Palace to reflect on her life and her legacy.”