This Tuesday was Princess Diana's first official visit to the city. Her prime reason for the visit was to attend the World Leprosy Day service at the cathedral. Afterwards, on her way to the Town Hall to see the Eurotunnel Exhibition, she flouted the formality of royalty and indulged in a walk down Bridge Street to chat to the crowds, many of whom had been waiting for three hours or more for her. She lunched at the Haycock at Wansford, where the guests had paid £100 or more each for the privilege, all the money going to help build a leprosy hospital in Thailand. Diana then returned to Peterborough to visit the Sue Ryder Home at Thorpe Hall, where she met Lady Ryder. She then spent some time talking to the staff as well as the people who were involved in getting the building into shape. The princess' day ended with a visit to the King's School as a part of its 450th anniversary commemoration. She made a return visit to the area in May of the same year, when she visited RAF Wittering with Prince Harry. The 7-year old was 'as pleased as punch' to be allowed to sit in the cockpit of a Harrier jump-jet. (Harper-Tee, John, 'The Peterborough Story', Peterborough Evening Telegraph, 1992)
Taken from The Peterborough Book of Days by Brian Jones, The History Press, 2014.