The Prince and Princess of Wales embarked on their first official royal tour after welcoming son Prince William, now 38, which marked one of three visits to Australia Diana, then aged 22, made with her husband, before their divorce in 1996.
She tragically died a year later on August 31, 1997 at the age of 36, after being involved in a fatal car accident in Paris.
The couple reportedly showed ‘great charm and tact’ on their first official trip in 1983 – including the moment Princess Diana ‘defused’ what could’ve been a ‘slightly embarrassing incident’ when a Republican protester tried to hand her a ‘Eureka’ flag during a visit to the new Parliament House in Australia’s capital, Canberra.
However, as reported by the Metro, another ‘confidential’ document, written by the then New Zealand High Commissioner Sir Richard Stratton, to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, highlighted a more unusual occurrence.
Prince Charles and Princess Diana were mooned by a protestor during their royal tour of Australia and New Zealand in 1983, archive files have revealed. Pictured, carrying baby Prince William as they arrive at Alice Spring Airport at the start of their tour of Australia and New Zealand on March 20, 1983
The Princess of Wales and Prince Charles pictured waving to residents and spectators at Bentley Hockey Stadium in Perth during a Royal visit to Australia with Prince Charles on 7th April 1983
It reads: ‘The professional, mainly white, protesters made little impact. A well-known Maori agitator presented his bare – and hideous! – bottom (allegedly the worst Maori insult, but I have my doubts!) to Their Royal Highnesses as they drove into Wellington from the airport.’
According to a report by Vogue in the November, the monarchy was worried about how Diana would handle the high-pressure tour.
‘The Queen is “terribly worried” before the tour because of Diana’s youth and apparent shyness,’ the Press Association’s royal correspondent Grania Forbes wrote at the time.
But they didn’t have to worry, with files, which have recently been released under the Freedom of Information Act, seemingly suggesting Princess Diana won fans and charmed the country during the visit.
Diana wearing a peach coloured dress with a white collar designed by Bellville Sassoon and a peach archer style hat with a marabou plume designed by John Boyd, is greeted by the public during a walkabout on March 25, 1983 in Canberra
The Prince of Wales holds Diana, Princess of Wales’ hand during their first tour together to Australia on March 29
Welcome return: Diana later returned to Australia for a royal tour after marrying Charles and welcoming son Prince William (left). Pictured after arriving in Australia in March 1983
On tour: The royal couple first visited Australia together in March 1983, and according to a report by Vogue in November, the monarchy was worried about how Diana would handle the high-pressure tour. Pictured together in Uluru in March 1981
Sir Richard noted: ‘New Zealanders wanted above all to see the Princess of Wales, and they did, especially in the numerous “walk-abouts”.
‘Princess Diana’s clothes and homely (in the best, English sense) gestures towards children and Prince Charles’s witty speeches won particular acclaim.
A debrief following the royal tour observed: ‘There is no doubt that this royal visit has been a personal triumph for the Prince and Princess of Wales, both individually and together.
In the process it has provided striking evidence of the depth and warmth of feeling which Australians have for their Royal Family, and of their loyalty to the crown.’