He was Princess Diana’s longtime butler, serving both during and after her marriage to Britain’s Prince Charles. Diana described him as her “rock.” He was also the sole survivor of the Paris car crash that claimed the life of the princess, her boyfriend Dodi al-Fayed, and their driver Henri Paul. After Diana’s death, he wrote a memoir of his life with the princess, and appeared on the UK’s “celebrity Survivor” series I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here in 2004.
He divorced his first wife, Maria Cosgrove, last year (though they had lived separately for years), and on Sunday, April 2, 2017, Paul Burrell was married a second time. He wed boyfriend Graham Cooper in front of friends and family in England’s picturesque Lake District. The wedding comes one month after Burrell came out publicly as gay – something he had hidden for decades.
The ceremony and reception took place at Linthwaite House, a luxury boutique hotel overlooking Lake Windermere in Bowness, Cumbria. Both grooms wore tartan designed and registered by Burrell to represent their relationship, as well as his life. Burrell and Cooper, both 58, aren’t Scottish, but Burrell wore a kilt, and accessorized with a tartan scarf pinned with a medal of service he received from the Queen. He also wore blue cufflinks that had been gifted to him by Diana. Cooper, a corporate lawyer whom Burrell met ten years ago on a train from London to Crewe, wore tartan pants and matching tie. Both men wore black suit jackets.
Burrell and Cooper’s civil partnership ceremony is said to have cost £30,000. The couple walked up the aisle together, to the strains of Barbra Streisand’s “Some Enchanted Evening.” After they were pronounced newly wed, they danced back down the aisle to Kylie Minogue’s “Better the Devil You Know” as guests showered them with heart-shaped confetti. Among them were his two U.S.-based sons with Cosgrove, Alex, 32, and Nick, 28.
Remarking to the press about his wedding day, Burrell said, “Everything about the day has been perfect, made even more wonderful by the fact that my two sons were here to share in the occasion. There’s no more hiding my unbridled happiness now. Life is about being true to who you are and, for the first time ever, I’m able to stand proudly beside my husband and say ‘This is who I am’.”