A royal family super-fan has shared never-before-seen pictures of Princess Diana exactly two decades after she tragically died.
Julia McCarthy-Fox, who calls herself ‘Britain’s biggest royal fan,’ says she has travelled thousands of miles across the UK to take photographs of royal engagements for more than 30 years.
Up until Diana’s untimely death in a car crash in Paris in 1997, the 52-year-old, of Horsham in West Sussex, would follow the Princess around and attended many of her public appearances.
Now she is sharing some of her photographs of the People’s Princess for the first time to pay tribute to Diana 20 years after her death on August 31, 1997 and her funeral six days later on September 6.
Diana, Princess of Wales at the British Red Cross Society in London, 1987 – one of the many pictures of the People’s Princess taken by Julia McCarthy-Fox. Julia said this is her favourite photo that she took
Diana at a public engagement, receiving flowers (left) and (right) in London in 1988
Housewife Julia, a mother-of-one, said: ‘Very early on it became apparent that Diana had a kind of magical aura around her – she seemed to radiate joy as she plunged into yet another walkabout.
‘She had this knack of spotting anyone in a crowd who was shy or nervous, ensuring that she shook their hand and shared a few words with them.’
Julia has been dubbed Britain’s most devoted royal watcher after photographing members of the royal family for more than 30 years.
She took pictures of the princess, along with William, Harry and Charles, from 1983 to around 1995.
Diana, Princess of Wales, at the Barbican Centre in London in 1988, shot by Julia
Diana was captured candidly at public engagements by Julia for more than 10 years
Diana, Princess of Wales, at the Brighton Centre in July 1990 – seven years before she died
Diana, Princess of Wales, in London, 1988, receiving flowers from members of the public
Her favourite picture of Diana is of her wearing a red V-neck jumper on a visit to the British Red Cross Society HQ in around 1987.
She said: ‘Everyone wanted to reach her, metaphorically and literally, and she was sometimes almost hauled over barriers as people clamoured to grab at her to shake hands from several rows back in the crowd.
‘I spoke to her several times and although I can remember nothing of what was said I can still recall how exciting it was to be that close to her.
‘The crowd would buzz for ages after she had passed and everyone had a glow about them.
Diana, Princess of Wales, meeting an elderly woman – one of the many pictures of the people’s princess taken by Julia McCarthy-Fox
Diana, Princess of Wales, receiving a posy of flowers in London in 1988
Diana, Princess of Wales with Prince William (on left) and Prince Harry (on right) at a memorial service to mark the 50th anniversary of the end of World War Two in London on May 8 1995
To mark two decades since the tragic Paris car crash, Julia is sharing some of her previously unseen photos in the Princess’s honour
Diana’s sartorial elegance and beaming smile were captured by Julia on camera
Diana, Princess of Wales with Charles, Prince of Wales, Prince William (centre left) and Prince Harry (right) at the 50th anniversary of the end of World War Two in London on May 8 in 1995
‘I have no idea what her secret was, but I do know that meeting her was something that people never forgot.
‘For a few special moments she made ordinary people feel extraordinary, and that was a remarkable skill.’
Julia said she felt a profound sense of shock and sorrow when she first heard that Diana had died following the car crash in Paris which also killed Dodi Fayed.
The housewife added: ‘During the afternoon my mother and I took some flowers from the garden to London and placed them right on the railing at Kensington Palace alongside a small number of others. Having given the Princess flowers in life I wanted to do so now to say goodbye.
Julia was there to capture moments from Diana’s public engagements, including at The Savoy Hotel, London on October 27, 1986 (left), and at the Barbican Centre on June 11, 1986 (right)
Julia has been dubbed Britainís most devoted royal watcher after photographing members of the royal family, including Diana (pictured), for more than 30 years
Julia was there for many moments during Diana’s public engagements, taking many beautiful candid snaps of the Princess
The funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales, London, on September 6, 1997
‘We could never have imagined the flowers that were to follow, nor the scale of the huge outpouring of grief.’
Mother-of-one, Julia and her mother returned to London on the day of the Princess’s funeral, setting up camp in The Mall.
Julia said: ‘As the hearse taking the princess on her final journey passed on its way back down The Mall.
Single flowers were thrown into its path and as it disappeared from view, with roses on the roof and carnations strewn in the road behind it, Diana was gone for the last time.
‘What a sad fairytale that had turned into.’