The sons of Diana, Princess of Wales unveiled a fitting tribute to their mother – cast in bronze and a symbol of her compassion and hope.
At the ceremony, the Duke of Cambridge and the Duke of Sussex turned back the years and were an engaging duo with William leading the way and Harry making guests laugh.
Recent turmoil amid accusations by Harry of racism in the royal family and denials from his brother seemed a thing of the past and they walked in step, mirroring their actions like they had never fallen out.
In the grounds of the palace where they grew up the mood was light and celebratory, with the proud brothers pointing out changes to the Sunken Garden where the statue of their mother was erected, looking back at her former home and surrounded by three children.
They had taken a keen interest in the green space’s redesign and also “collaborated” with sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley in creating the artwork.
Diana’s siblings – Earl Spencer, Lady Sarah McCorquodale and Lady Jane Fellowes – were among the handful of guests and the brothers reserved the warmest welcome for family.
Ever the joker, Harry kissed his aunt Sarah on both cheeks then gave her two mock pecks as she pointed her finger at him.
The brothers had friendly handshakes for the members of the statue committee who got the project going and found the private funds to see it completed.
The dukes were animated and lively, and if the number of guests had not been limited by Covid restrictions the event would probably have had a party atmosphere.
When the moment of truth came, William looked at his guests and asked “ready?”, and the brothers, standing either side of their mother’s image, pulled a cord to reveal the statue.
Applause followed and Diana’s sons stood back and admired the artwork, Harry with his hands on his hips, before they were joined by Lady Sarah who chatted to her nephews.
Now for years to come those visiting the princess’s former home will be able to stand in her shadow and remember Diana’s life.