Diana letters withdrawn from auction in Whittlebury

Jonathan Humbert from JP Humbert Auctioneers with photos and letters written by Diana to her step-mum and cake decorations from King George's wedding up for auction.
Jonathan Humbert from JP Humbert Auctioneers with photos and letters written by Diana to her step-mum and cake decorations from King George's wedding up for auction.
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LADY Diana Spencer’s step mother has stepped into stop the auction of private letters which were due to go under the hammer in Whittlebury next week.

The two letters and other memorabilia, including photos, were handed to JP Humbert Auctioneers, for sale by a former employee of the Spencer family who claimed legitimate ownership of them.

But this week auctioneer Jonathan Humbert agreed to withdraw the items after Countess Raine Spencer, Lady Diana Spencer’s step-mother, contacted the business challenging the copyright of the items.

But Mr Humbert insists that no suggestion of theft was made, but that instead title of the letters was unclear and had been “clouded by the mists of time”.

He said: “I have spoken to both the vendor and Countess Spencer and by mutual consent by both parties I have withdrawn the items from sale.

“We have not been told to do this and there has been no legal involvement but following an honest and frank conversation it is my judgement not to put these items on the open market.”