One Year On: Replacements Who is to rule our hearts now that Diana has gone?

The loss of the Princess of Wales has left a gap in fields as diverse as fundraising, fashion, and popular psychological analysis. Few can come close to Diana's particular mix of glamour, self-promotion, charm, histrionics and selflessness. It is hard to reproduce.

Why do we want another Diana? "Social icons have all sorts of functions," says Dr Margaret Mitchell, of Glasgow Caledonian University's department of psychology. "Diana was a particularly complex example. She was seen as an ordinary girl with ordinary problems, but at the same time, she was on a pedestal."

So who are the figures that have found themselves filling the breach? The anti-landmine baton has been handed on jointly to footballer David Ginola and Queen Noor of Jordan. The elegant, American-born Queen Noor has the requisite royal glamour but she also boasts a Princeton education very far removed from Diana's populism. Tottenham Hotspur star Ginola also possesses glamour and is less averse to taking up the Diana mantle. "I cannot take her place ... but I can carry on her message," he has said. And, like Diana, he has been touched by the whiff of scandal. The tabloids exposed his extra-marital canoodling with Guinness advertisement actress Vicky Lee.

Anthea Turner's perky blondeness has similarly been tainted by her relationship with businessman Grant Bovey. But she has cited Diana as the catalyst that inspired her to take the plunge into scarlet womanhood. "The Princess of Wales's death really affected me," she explained at the time of her marriage break-up. "It struck me that you really do have to live every day as if it is your last because you just don't know what is going to happen to you."

A sterner new model is Cherie Blair, who was compared to Diana earlier this year when she was photographed kneeling by the bedside of a child with cancer. Observers have praised the radical improvement of her image over the past 12 months. However, she is unlikely to throw herself into Diana-type occupations.

Someone for whom hospital visiting is high on the agenda is Jemima Khan, nee Goldsmith. Beautiful and classy, she is an active supporter of the Shukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital, founded by her husband Imran Khan. However, she is rather out of the loop, having decamped to Lahore, and, sadly, Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman feels she just doesn't come up to scratch any more in the glamour stakes. "[She] let the side down badly when she became Jemima Khan and turned her talents to making the salwar-kameez look sexy and converting us all to the joys of extended family life," she wrote recently.

Jemima Khan looks like a latter-day Jackie Kennedy, though, compared to Sally Becker, the self-styled Angel of Mostar. A freelance distributor of humanitarian aid, she has alarmed more orthodox helpers in eastern European war-zones by her recklessness, her courting of publicity and her habit of refusing to eat in order to make a point. Sounds familiar? More likely to be seen in battle fatigues than ball gown, though.

There are even less likely candidates for Diana's crown. Her brother, Charles Spencer, has been spotted visiting orphanages in Cape Town. Although at first he insisted he wanted to keep his good works secret, he allowed local journalists to accompany him. "I prefer to be thought of as doing what I can to improve the lives of others," he said modestly.

For a substitute that comes anywhere close it's necessary to look nearer to home. Royal-watchers have noticed a change in Prince Charles over the past year. He is displaying a new taste for comforting the sick and dying and going out of his way to meet drug addicts. His stock is rising, but not as high as that of William, the pin-up Prince, who, at 16, is already turning heads. "There beside Prince Charles stood a tall, blushing teenager, a show-stealer," noted the Daily Mail of last spring's hugely successful royal trip to Canada. "That same tilted head. The same flashing eyes. The same shy smile. The screaming crowds. And so it all begins again. Not Diana-mania, but Will-mania." Hester Lacey

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookA wonderful selection of salads, starters and mains featuring venison, grouse and other game
Life and Style
ebookAn evocation of the conflict through the eyes of those who lived through it
Arts and Entertainment
Standing the test of time: Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'
filmReview: A week late, Secret Cinema arrives as interactive screening goes Back to the Future
News
Chancellor George Osborne, along with the Prime Minister, have been 'complacently claiming the economy is now fixed', according to shadow Chancellor Ed Balls
i100... which is awkward, because he is their boss, after all
Travel
travel
Arts and Entertainment
Sydney and Melbourne are locked in a row over giant milk crates
artCultural relations between Sydney and Melbourne soured by row over milk crate art instillation
Arts and Entertainment
Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux play teeneage lovers in the French erotic drama 'Blue Is The Warmest Colour' - The survey found four times as many women admitting to same-sex experiences than 20 years ago
filmBlue Is The Warmest Colour, Bojack Horseman and Hobbit on the way
Arts and Entertainment
Preparations begin for Edinburgh Festival 2014
Edinburgh festivalAll the best shows to see at Edinburgh this year
News
i100
News
Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
peopleBenidorm, actor was just 68
Environment
View from the Llanberis Track to the mountain lake Llyn
Du’r Arddu
environmentA large chunk of Mount Snowdon, in north Wales, is up for sale
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
News
Morrissey pictured in 2013
people
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Renewable Energy Construction Manager

    £40000 - £50000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

    Senior Wind Energy Due Diligence Project Manager

    £50000 - £60000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

    Offshore Wind Project Engineer

    £40000 - £50000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

    Subsea Proposals Engineer

    £50000 - £55000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

    Day In a Page

    Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

    Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

    Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
    Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

    Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

    When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
    5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

    In grandfather's footsteps

    5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
    Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

    Martha Stewart has flying robot

    The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
    Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

    Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

    Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
    A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

    A tale of two presidents

    George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
    Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

    The dining car makes a comeback

    Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
    Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

    Gallery rage

    How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
    Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

    Eye on the prize

    Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
    Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

    Women's rugby

    Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup
    Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

    The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

    With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
    Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

    How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

    As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
    We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

    We will remember them

    Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
    Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

    Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

    Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
    Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

    Acting in video games gets a makeover

    David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices