Diana, Princess of Wales, was planning to marry her Muslim lover, Hasnat Khan, her inquest was told today.
The Princess’s butler, Paul Burrell, approached his local Catholic priest to ask about arranging a “private wedding” between a Christian and a Muslim, the High Court hearing was told.
The royal aide’s account differs sharply from that of Mohamed Al Fayed, who has always maintained his son Dodi was going to marry Diana.
But despite the Princess and Mr Khan breaking up a few weeks before she met Dodi, Mr Burrell believed she still “held a candle” for Mr Khan, a heart surgeon, and suggested she was making him jealous with her new relationship.
Mr Burrell’s evidence to the hearing has been eagerly anticipated and he told the inquest that Mr Khan had been introduced to Diana’s sons, Princes William and Harry, and had become part of the “fixtures and fittings” at the Palace.
The royal aide had also begun preparing rooms at Diana’s Kensington Palace home for Mr Khan.
Asked by Ian Burnett QC, representing the inquest, whether she “contemplated” marriage with Mr Khan, the former butler replied: “Yes, she did.”
He added: “She asked me if it was possible to arrange a private marriage between her and Hasnat Khan.”