Princess Diana’s sly dig at royal life in Kensington Palace: ‘Curtains twitching’


PRINCESS DIANA made a sly dig at royal life inside Kensington Palace, where she lived both before and after her divorce from Prince Charles, according to broadcaster Jeremy Paxman.

The Cambridge family live in the 20-room Apartment 1A, and use Diana’s former residence, Apartment 8, as office space for their staff, official duties and charity work.

The People’s Princess offered a brief insight into life at the Palace during a private lunch with broadcaster Jeremy Paxman.

Mr Paxman recalled his lunch with Diana in the 2019 Channel 5 documentary ‘Paxman on the Queen’s Children’.Princess Diana

Princess Diana’s sly dig at royal life in Kensington Palace: ‘Curtains twitching’ (Image: GETTY)

Kensington Palace

The sprawling grounds of Kensington Palace. (Image: GETTY)

He said: “We talked about our children and she said William often told her that he didn’t really want to be king, and then Harry would say, ‘If you don’t want the job I’ll have it!’.”

Mr Paxman described Diana as seeming “pretty lonely” and likened the Palace to a “prison”.

He continued: “She said, ‘It’s not a prison at all, Jeremy.

“More like an upmarket Coronation Street. As we go out, you will see all the curtains twitching.’”

Diana with William and Harry

Diana lived at Kensington Palace before and after her divorce. (Image: GETTY)

Diana admitted she struggled under the pressures of being one of the most famous faces in the world.

She confided to the Premier of Newfoundland, Brian Peckford, in 1983, saying: “I am finding it very difficult to cope with the pressures of being Princess of Wales, but I am learning to cope with it.”

In a series of audiotapes from the early Nineties, broadcasted in Channel 4’s 2017 documentary ‘Diana: In Her Own Words’, she admitted she had continued to struggle.

She said: “Because I had a smile on my face everybody thought I was having a wonderful time.

Princess Diana with a young Prince William

Princess Diana with a young Prince William at Kensington Palace. (Image: GETTY)

“That’s what they chose to think and they were happier thinking that. It didn’t get easier.”

Diana retained her double apartment on the north side of Kensington Palace after her 1996 divorce, and it remained her home until her death the following year.

Her offices were also moved to the residence, and she could continue to use the state apartments at St James’s Palace for “entertaining” so long as she sought the Queen’s permission first.

Her former butler Paul Burrell claimed in his 2003 book ‘A Royal Duty’ that the Princess’ brother, Lord Spencer, had refused to let her live at the Spencer family’s childhood home of Althorp, despite her request.

Charles, Diana and William

Princess Diana and Prince Charles with Prince William and his koala bear toy (Image: GETTY)

Meanwhile, there is ongoing speculation that there is “disinterest” in Kensington Palace and it could even be “decommissioned” by Prince Charles when he becomes King.

More than three years after a multi-million-pound refurbishment, the 21-room Apartment 1 remains empty. It had been earmarked for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle when they married.

However, with the Sussexes living in California, and the Cambridges believed to be looking at a move to Windsor, the Palace’s future is somewhat unclear.

The Palace has an estimated value of £620 million, according to the Mail on Sunday.

“He would be wise to rent it out and hold it in reserve should he need to accommodate any royals down the line.”

As well as housing the Cambridges, the Palace’s grounds contain offices and homes of the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester and Prince and Princess Michael of Kent, as well as the Duke and Duchess of Kent.

Around 50 present and former royal staff also live there, the Mail on Sunday said.

‘Kensington Palace: Behind Closed Doors’ airs tonight on Channel 5 at 8pm.


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