In the wake of Netflix’s drama The Crown, many have reevaluated the Royal Family’s relationship with Princess Diana. While creator Peter Morgan’s show is not biopic nor a documentary, it is based on real events that unfolded within The Firm. Away from the dramatised account, royal biographer Robert Lacey gave insight into the real relationship between the Queen and the late Princess Diana.
Mr Lacey seemed to counter some of the tumultuous scenes portrayed in The Crown by Olivia Coleman and Emma Corrin.
He argued that while it appeared that the Queen was “at loggerheads with Diana” throughout their time together that wasn’t always the case.
Mr Lacy explained: “That was possibly true at the very end but at the beginning, the Queen was her chief supporter.
“She knew her, she was a little girl who grew up in her back-garden in Sandringham [House]… she’d cradled her as a baby.”
The royal expert claimed that The Queen was especially supportive of Princess Diana because she feared repercussions from Prince Charles’ relationship with Camilla Parker Bowles.
Queen Elizabeth II: Royal expert claims Monarch was ‘fervent supporter of Princess Diana’
Prince Charles and Princess Diana got married in 1981
Mr Lacy said: “She was all in favour of Charles settling down with a nice young woman and getting rid of Camilla, which the family disliked and were worried about.
“They could see the scandal looming, so when Diana turned up at Balmoral [Castle] after her marriage and was difficult, the Queen understood her.”
He claimed that the Queen called in psychiatrists from Harley Street, an area known for its private medical specialists, in an attempt to “help her to deal with her inner demons”.
She also “summoned the Lords of Fleet Street”, where many of Britain’s national newspapers used to be based, to “deal with demons who were persecuting her on the street”.
After a clash between Prince Charles and Princess Diana over her hope to attend the funeral of Grace Kelly, the Princess of Monaco, on behalf of the Royal Family, the Queen sided with her too.
Mr Lacey commented: “Diana said ‘No, I’ll phone the Queen’… and the Queen said, ‘Yes, it’s just the job for you.’”
He claimed that even after Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s separation in 1992, the Queen was in support of her decisions “right at the end”.
Mr Lacey explained: “Charles said, ‘Right, we’re going to write her out of the script, she’s barmy.
“‘No more Queen’s flight for her, no more royal train, get her staff out of St James’s Palace’, The Queen said ‘No!’”
He argued that the Queen wanted her “to stay inside the family” because of her soft-spot for Princess Diana.
Prince Charles married Camilla Parker Bowles in 2005
Mr Lacey also claimed that she feared the “trouble” Princess Diana could present to the Royal Family “outside the palace walls”.
He argued that the Monarch finally turned against Princess Diana “at the very last minute” after she bad-mouthed the Royal Family on Panorama.
During the 1995 BBC show interview with Martin Bashir, she questioned “Prince Charles’ ability to be King” and claimed that the royals were “out of touch”.
When Princess Diana voiced her hope to be “Queen of people’s hearts” that was said to be the “the end” and prompted a fierce response from the Queen.
Mr Lacey recalled: “At that point the Queen snapped, sent her the letter and that was really when the Queen lost patience.
Princess Diana and Prince Charles’ relationship explained
“But until that point, she was Diana’s most fervent supporter.
“She realised that whatever she may have in her heart, it was incredibly important to have a Princess of Wales to be a mother to the boys.”
The royal expert pointed to another reason for the Queen’s strong support of Princess Diana after the split – ensuring the Royal Family would survive.
Mr Lacey continued: “And to keep the show on the road because at the end of the day that’s what the British monarchy is about, being in business.”
Princess Diana died after a car accident in 1997, while she was being chased by paparazzi in Paris, France.
Her funeral on September 6, was watched by 2.5 billion people worldwide and more than two million mourners lined the streets outside Westminster Abbey.
During the 2018 ITV documentary Prince Harry’s Story: Four Royal Weddings, experts offered further insight into that heartbreaking day.
Prince Harry, then 12 years old, was said to have been inconsolable ahead of the funeral but was issued with blunt words from Prince Charles.
Princess Diana died after a car accident in 1997, in Paris, France
The Prince of Wales was reported to have told the youngster: “You don’t cry, you walk.”Newsreader Dermot Murnaghan expressed his disbelief with the instruction, which he branded as “brutal”.
He said: “What could be more awful than being told by your father and your grandfather, ‘You don’t look to the side, you walk in step with me, you don’t cry, you walk’ – I mean that is brutal.”
Dickie Arbiter, the Queen’s former press secretary, explained: “There’s an old saying in royal circles, don’t wear prairie grief on a public sleeve. And they didn’t.
“You’re probably screaming inside and hurting inside, but they carried that off with such dignity that people even today don’t understand how they did it.”
Source: EXPRESS CO UK