1 APRIL 1986 PRINCE CHARLES AND PRINCESS DIANA OPEN HEATHROW’S NEW TERMINAL 4

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Twenty-nine years ago today, Heathrow’s Terminal 4 was opened by the Prince and Princess of Wales. They arrived by underground tube train at Heathrow Terminal 4 to perform the opening ceremony. They travelled on the new underground train link between Hatton Cross and Terminal 4.  Adding the extra 3 miles to the Piccadilly Line cost £26 million.

The new terminal cost £200 million and was built on the south side of the airport.  Prince Charles struggled to cut the tape because his arm was in a sling from a recent gardening accident while planting a tree at Highgrove House. Diana helped him do the honors by steadying the scissors and cutting the ribbon together.

The new terminal design did not seem to please the Prince too much. He complained of having to trudge yards through corridors and on escalators. He was jovial, however, when presented with ‘Harry Heathrow’ a toy bear.  He stuffed it in his sling to take home to the boys as they departed.

During the tour, Diana joked with royal photographer Arthur Edwards to keep his eyes off her legs when she was told that riding the escalator in a skirt with a split up the back would create a photo opportunity for the photographers at the bottom. Luckily, airport officials hastily decided to ban the photographers from the foot of the escalators and a risqué photo was avoided. But her detectives took no chances; they got close behind her as she glided up and away.
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