Thirty-five years ago, Australia transformed Princess Diana from shy Di to global star. Picture: AFP

London - Thirty-five years ago, Australia transformed Princess Diana from shy Di to global star. It brought us the birth of "Di-mania" and every time she went back she had the same spellbinding effect, in good times and bad.

Now the balmy Antipodean air is working its magic all over again - this time on her son Harry and his pregnant wife Meghan.

As they began their first full day Down Under last week, a pair of butterfly earrings and a gold bracelet glistened in the sunshine, jewellery worn by the Duchess of Sussex that once belonged to Diana.

The significance cannot be overlooked as Harry conjures up new ways to ensure that the spirit of his mother is with the couple in public and in private.

Meghan also has with her on this trip the square-cut aquamarine ring she wore on her wedding day for the evening reception at Frogmore House which, I can reveal, was a gift Diana received on the day her divorce from Prince Charles became final in 1996.

A pair of butterfly earrings and a gold bracelet glistened in the sunshine, jewellery worn by the Duchess of Sussex that once belonged to Diana. Picture: AP

It was given to her by diplomat’s wife Lucia Flecha de Lima, one of her closest friends, who bought it to replace the engagement ring Diana no longer wanted to wear once her marriage ended. The stone came from the same mine in Senhora De Lima’s native Brazil which has provided aquamarines for the Queen.

It was not just Diana who enjoyed a special link with the generous Lucia, so too did William and Harry. When she visited Kensington Palace she always brought something for the boys.

If it was money, it was often a £50 note. "Ooh, a pink Granny," the boys would exclaim excitedly, a reference to the Queen’s head on the banknote.

Harry never forgot such kindness and, when he and William were making their plans for a statue of their mother as a permanent memorial, they sought the views of Sra De Lima.

Sadly, she died last year before the project could be completed. But both boys knew how much she meant to their mother during the years she was in London as the wife of Brazil’s ambassador to the UK, and later in Washington when he was appointed envoy to the US.

Diana would often talk to Lucia and other friends of her "precious boys" - but particularly of Harry. She adored them both but William, destined to be king, was marked from birth for special attention.

As compensation, Diana poured more love and attention into Harry. "I have to," she would often tell me. "Charles and I worked so hard to ensure both boys receive equal amounts of our time and love, but others in the family seem to concentrate on William."