London: In what could apparently erase Princess Diana`s memory, the British Royal Family has ordered an overhaul of the Kensington Palace which was once the late Princess of Wales` residence.
The GBP 12 million revamp begins next week and is due to be completed in time for the British Queen`s Diamond Jubilee in June 2012.
It will see Diana, arguably the Princess most closely associated with the royal residence, take a back seat to other past residents including Princess Margaret and Queen Victoria, the `Daily Express` reported.
This is because Diana`s apartment is used as office space, so the revamp might disappoint her fans who flocked to the 17th century palace in London to lay flowers after her death in a car crash in Paris in 1997.
Over the past decade, it has played host to a number of Diana-related exhibitions including displays of her evening gowns and portraits taken by her photographer Mario Testino.
But, Dr Lucy Worsley, chief curator of Historic Royal Palaces, which oversees the upkeep of five royal residences including Kensington Palace, said last month that she believed Diana is yesterday`s woman, no longer considered a sufficient draw to merit her own exhibition space.
"While Diana remains a very important part of the history of the palace, she`s no longer part of contemporary culture. It`s time for her to take her place in the gallery, alongside all the others.”
"In fact, of the 250,000 annual visitors to the palace, almost as many want to see the late 17th-century historic state apartments as are drawn to the palace because it is Diana`s former home," the historian said.
Built in 1605 and bought in 1689 by William III and his wife, Queen Mary, the Grade-I listed Kensington building hosted the courts of Queen Anne and George I and II. Queen Victoria was born and raised there.