Princess Diana's blue plaque to be installed by Sunderland builder who has already done those of John Lennon, Charlie Chaplin and Freddie Mercury
A Sunderland builder has been given the task of installing a blue plaque in London commemorating Princess Diana.
Trevor Ramsay has installed English Heritage blue plaques around the capital for the past 16 years, fitting almost 200 of them during that time.
He lived and worked in London for 28 years, but now travels down from his South Bents home to fit 10 or 12 plaques each year.
Installing them is not just a matter of turning up with a drill and some screws. A hole must be created in the wall where each plaque is mounted, to perfectly accommodate the 500mm x 50mm (about 15 inches x 2 inches) artefacts. Trevor also hangs the unveiling curtains.
Earlier this year English Heritage, which oversees London’s blue plaques, announced that Diana would be one of six notable women to receive the honour in 2021, which would have been her 60th birthday. She died in 1997.
Her former London flat on Coleherne Court will become an historical building. She lived there between 1979 and 1981, before her engagement to Prince Charles.
Diana becomes the latest in a long line of recipients to require the skills of Trevor. Others include John Lennon, Bob Marley, Freddie Mercury, Charlie Chaplin, Bobby Moore, Rudolf Nureyev, Kenneth Williams, Tommy Cooper, Ava Gardner and Washington-born explorer and administrator Gertrude Bell.
In April Trevor, 63, installed plaques to dramatist John Osborne and reformer Caroline Norton, one of the other five women besides Princess Diana to be honoured this year.
Trevor said: “I usually do two at a time to make the journey worthwhile.
“I got the job through one of my contacts I met when I was living in London. He had the contract, I was subcontracting to him. I was later asked if I wanted to continue installing them myself. I’ve been doing it for five or six years now. It’s quite a specialised job.
“It’s a bit of an honour and it’s certainly a unique job. I get to meet quite a few famous people.”
Ian McKellen, Judi Dench, David Attenborough, Darcey Bussell and Paul Merton are just a few of the famous folk to meet Trevor at unveilings.
The next time you see a blue plaque in London remember, there’s a good chance that a Sunderland lad put it there.