‘Prefer not to be there!’ Princess Diana’s bodyguard on ‘private grief’ of Spencer family


COLIN Tebbutt claimed that he would have preferred not to attend the lunch after Princess Diana’s funeral but was invited by His Royal Highness.

After her public funeral, her close family took her body for its private second funeral and Colin Tebbutt Diana’s former driver accompanied them.

Colin Tebbutt MVO, Member of the Victorian Order & former Royal Protection Officer said: “We drive to Althorp, Lord Spencer said to Paul Burrell and myself ‘You will be joining us at lunch.’

“His Royal Highness and all the family, he said ‘No no no, you are part of the household, you join us for lunch’.

“We walked into the lunch where there was just His Royal Highness, the sisters, their family.

” I preferred probably not to have been there because it was private grief for the family and there were going through quite a thing.”

Lady Sarah McCorquodale, Lady Jane Fellows and Earl Spencer, at the opening of a fountain built in memory of Diana.

Lady Sarah McCorquodale, Lady Jane Fellows and Earl Spencer at Princess Diana funeral fountain. (Image: Getty )

HM Queen Elizabeth II delivers a speech at the opening of a fountain built in memory of Diana.

HM Queen Elizabeth II delivers a speech at the opening of a fountain built in memory of Diana. (Image: Getty )

Emily Andrews, the Royal Editor at Mail on Sunday said: “There was a lot of bad blood between the two, I remember someone telling me that the two men were talking on the telephone about the arrangements, the private arrangements for the funeral and Prince of Wales said something and Charles Spencer just hung up on him in anger.

“So definitely there was love lost between two men.”

Mr Tebbutt revealed how he and Paul Burrell were invited to join the Royal Family and her family for lunch by Lord Spencer.

The public funeral took place at Westminster Abbey on September 6, 1997, with two thousand people attending the event and 32 million watched live on television.

Sir Elton John performed at Diana’s funeral with his newly written “Candle in the Wind” for the Princess of Wales.

Charles Spencer told BBC Radio 4 Today programme that it was a “cruel thing” to make Prince William and Prince Harry walk behind her casket.

The Oval at Althorp Park

The Oval at Althorp Park (Image: Getty )

“The feeling, the sort of absolute crashing tidal wave of grief coming at you as you went down this sort of tunnel of deep emotion, it was really harrowing and I still have nightmares about it now.

He further added: “So there was the inner turmoil of thinking, ‘My God this is ghastly’, but then the point of thinking these two boys are doing this and it must be a million times worse for them.

“It was truly horrifying, actually.

“We would walk a hundred yards and hear people sobbing and then walk around a corner and somebody wailing and shouting out messages of love to Diana or William and Harry, and it was a very, very tricky time.”


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