APRIL 1987: Crowds brave the rain for Princess Diana

Happy crowds outside Hunniball Court, Preston
Happy crowds outside Hunniball Court, Preston
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Thirty years ago this month crowds turned out as a very special visitor jetted into Preston for a fleeting tour of the town

A sea of umbrellas greeted Princess Diana on a trip to Preston 30 years ago this month.

The Royal visitor jetted into Warton Aerodrome on a wet April 1, 1987, for a scheduled two-stop tour of Preston.

Her first call of the day was to Hunniball Court, in Ashton, where she met with deaf people who lived in the sheltered accommodation and showed off her sign language skills.

Residents presented her with a cloth guardsman as a gift for Prince Harry. who was just two years old at the time.

As she left, Diana stopped the Royal cars to chat to people who had braved the wet weather to line the streets and greet her.

From there the Princess headed to West View Leisure Centre, in Ribbleton, where she was met with cheers when she emerged from her car to be greeted by the Mayor of Preston Coun Dick

Atkinson and Zoe Barlow who presented her with a posy of flowers.

Children from local special needs schools were among the first to say hello to the VIP as she was shown around the centre’s facilities and met users.

After two hours in Preston, Diana was whisked back to British Aerospace to take the Royal flight home.