The Queen Mother ‘Did Not Allow Diana’s Name To Be Mentioned’ After Marriage To Charles Ended


by grazia |
Published on

A loyal equerry of the Queen Mother has revealed how she refused to let Diana's name be mentioned in public, after the princess became separated from her beloved grandson Prince Charles.

Colin Burgess served the Queen Mother for two years in the mid-1990s and witnessed first-hand her feelings over the much-publicised fallout of Charles and Diana's marriage.

"Just a few weeks into the job, I asked whether she had seen Jonathan Dimbleby’s television documentary about Prince Charles broadcast the night before," he recalls, in an extract from a new edition of his memoir Behind Palace Doors, published by the Mail.

"It included the now famous interview in which Charles admitted that he had been unfaithful to Princess Diana... the look the Queen Mother gave me that day could have frozen fire. There was a smile there but she spoke through gritted teeth and her eyes narrowed slightly as she said, 'Some things are best not discussed.'"

The Queen Mother and Charles pictured in 1978 ©Rex

Burgess noted that it was a particularly sensitive subject, because "Charles was clearly far and away her favourite grandchild".

"It seemed to me that he [Charles] had a far cosier relationship with his grandmother than he did with the Queen," Burgess wrote.

"For her part, while she had all the time in the world for Charles, it was quite clear that the Queen Mother had no love at all for the Princess of Wales.

"Once Diana split from Charles, she was very much persona non grata, and I never again heard her name mentioned by, or in front of, the Queen Mum, not even when I saw her a couple of months after Diana’s death, by which time I had left her employ."

Charles and Diana on their wedding day, 1981 ©Rex

Diana and Charles split in 1992, and finalised their divorce four years later - amid Diana's explosive allegation that "there were three in the marriage"; a reference to Charles' now wife, Camilla Parker-Bowles.

"I think when I came into marriage -- especially when you've had divorced parents like myself... You'd want to try even harder to make it work and you don't want to fall back into a pattern that you've seen happen in your own family," Diana told the BBC’s Martin Bashir, in her infamous 1995 interview.

"I desperately want it to work; I desperately love my husband and I wanted to share everything together. And I thought that we were a very good team."

Charles and Diana's relationship, played out in the relentless glare of the media spotlight, appeared strained from the beginning. Asked whether they were in love after their engagement, Diana replied "of course", while Charles gave the rather more awkward response of, "whatever in love means".

Diana died in a car crash in Paris in 1996. The Queen Mother died in 2002 and Prince Charles hinted at the closeness of their relationship in his tribute, saying: "She was quite simply the most magical grandmother you could possibly have, and I was utterly devoted to her."

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