Princess Of Wales
July 1, 1961 in Norfolk, the Honorable Diana Frances Spencer
was born. When her father, the former Viscount Althorp,
became the 8th Earl Spencer upon his own father's death
in 1975, and Diana's title became Lady Diana Spencer.
Her mother was the Honorable Mrs. Shand-Kydd, daughter
of the 4th Baron Fermoy.
Diana had two elder sisters Sarah (born 1955), Jane (born
1957) and a younger brother Charles (born 1964). Her parents,
who had married in 1954, separated in 1967 and the marriage
was dissolved in 1969. Earl Spencer later married Raine,
Countess of Dartmouth in 1976. It is thought that the
failure of her parent's marriage made Diana determined
that when she married, it would be forever. After the
break-up of their parents, Diana and her siblings continued
to live with their father at Park House, Sandringham,
until 1975 when the family moved to the Spencer family
seat at Althorp (a stately house dating from 1508) in
Northamptonshire, in the English Midlands.
Lady Diana's education began at a preparatory school,
Riddlesworth Hall in Norfolk, and then in 1974 went as
a boarder to West Heath, near Sevenoaks, Kent. Although
she never excelled academically, Diana showed a particular
talent for domestic science, music and received an award
for her service to her school and classmates. Upon leaving
West Heath in 1977, Diana went to the finishing school
Institut Alpin Videmanette in Rougemont, Switzerland.
The following year she moved to a flat in Coleherne Court,
London where she worked for a short time as a nanny, governess,
and kindergarten teacher.
The romance with Charles began in 1980, although the couple
had been neighbors at Sandringham for many years and their
families knew each other well. On February 6, 1981, Prince
Charles proposed to Diana Spencer and the engagement was
officially announced on February 24.
entire country waited in anticipation for the big day.
Diana and Charles exchanged vows at St Paul's Cathedral
in London on July 29, 1981. The ceremony drew a global
television and radio audience estimated at around 1,000
million people, and hundreds of thousands of people packed
London streets to catch a glimpse of the happy couple.
wore a silk taffeta dress with a 25-foot train designed
by the Emanuels, her veil was held in place by the Spencer
family diamond tiara, and she carried a bouquet of gardenias,
lilies-of-the-valley, white freesia, golden roses, white
orchids, and stephanotis.
During their honeymoon, the Prince and Princess of Wales
first went to the Mountbatten family home at Broadlands,
Hampshire, before flying to Gibraltar to join the Royal
Yacht HMS BRITANNIA for a cruise through the Mediterranean
to Egypt. The newly weds made their principal home at
Highgrove House in Gloucestershire, and shared an apartment
in Kensington Palace.
The royal couple soon wanted to have children and on 21st
June 1982, Prince William Arthur Philip Louis was born
and Prince Henry (Harry) Charles Albert David on 15th
September 1984, both at St Mary's Hospital, Paddington,
years after the birth of their first son, it was announced
that The Prince and Princess of Wales had agreed to separate
and take joint responsibility for the upbringing of their
children. The Princess continued to live in Kensington
Palace, while the Prince was based at St James's Palace
and continued to live at Highgrove. In 1995, Princess
Diana gave an extraordinary BBC television interview in
which she admitted her bulimia, adultery and suggested
that the Royal Family were uncaring. The couple divorced
the following year and it was agreed that the Princess
was to be known as Diana, Princess of Wales, without the
style of 'Her Royal Highness'.
Back to DianaPrincessOfWales.net