In her 1995 TV interview, Diana told the British people, "I've been in a privileged position for 15 years (since 1981). I've got tremendous knowledge about people . . . I'm not a political animal but I think the biggest disease this world suffers from in this day and age is the disease of people feeling unloved . . . I'd like to be an ambassador for this country." At the time James Hill who was the chairman of Parliament's Constitutional Affairs Committee told BBC radio, "It cannot be a political position. It has to be something mixed up either with charity, some goodwill mission."
In early December 1995, John Major met with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to discuss "the future role of Princess Diana." It was understood, "Mr Major is under pressure from colleagues and members of Parliament, who say Princess Diana's lack of diplomatic training rules her out of any ambassadorial role." Jill Knight was the deputy head of a committee of influential Conservative members of Parliament explained, "It really is not enough just to smile at people and pat them on the head. I am quite sure she has a talent to comfort people and make them feel better, but if you are going to be a diplomat, you have got to have many years of experience."
In August 1997, Diana told Annick Cojean of 'Le Monde', "Being constantly in the public eye gives me a special responsibility, particularly that of using the impact of photographs to transmit a message, to sensitize the world to an important cause, to defend certain values. If I must define my role, I'd rather use the word 'messenger'. Nobody can dictate my conduct. I work on instinct. It’s my best adviser."
On New Year's Eve 1995, John Majors spoke to BBC Radio about Diana's role, "It needs to be a dignified role and a worthwhile role, and we will need to examine with the Princess of Wales precisely what that should be . . . Of course the Princess of Wales has a future role in British public life. There is no question about that. Whatever may happen in the future between the Prince and the Princess of Wales, the Princess of Wales is the mother of a future king."
Richard Kay of the 'Daily Mail' reported on New Year's Day 1996, a friend of Diana heard her said, "I have made it clear that the divorce will be on my terms." The friend continued, "The crux of the negotiations revolves around Diana's public role. She is not prepared to be pushed into 'retirement'. She believes that she still has a great deal to offer the country and she will not be thwarted by Buckingham Palace. She is quite determined that she will not be pushed into limbo as a sort of royal leper as was the Duchess of Windsor after the abdication of King Edward VIII (in 1936). Nor is she prepared to go away quietly and live abroad." According to 'The Sunday Telegraph' in May 1996, Diana was considering living overseas for parts of the year as John Major was sought to mediate what could be "the bloodiest divorce in Britain."
In February 1997, in a debate on the Constitution, only one member of Parliament, Labour's Tony Benn brought up the subject of the Monarchy, "The problem with the Monarchy is about the Crown, not the Royal family. The trouble is that Crown powers are enormous." Back in April 1996, Tony Blair told the BBC, "The constitutional position of the Monarchy is very clear. Everyone understands the problems the Royal family has been through over the past few years but I don't think we should forget a lot of the good that is done. I am a firm believer in the type of Constitutional Monarchy we have, but I also want to modernize our institutions. Constitutional change is really about preserving what is best about our institutions and at the same time adapting them to the changing needs of our times."
In May 1997, the Conservative Party lost power. Labour was elected into government. When it was announced in August 1997, the Tony Blair government would join nations favoring a ban on land mines, Diana reportedly remarked, "Its position on the subject was always clear. It's going to do tremendous work. Its predecessor was so hopeless. I hope we manage to persuade the United States to sign the treaty ban in Ottawa this December (in 1997)." The word "hopeless" was reportedly taken out of context. Kensington Palace promptly issued a press statement, "The Princess made no such criticism. Her stance on the question of land mines has been apolitical throughout. Her concerns are exclusively humanitarian."
In June 1997, Diana met with 'The New Yorker' editor, Tina Brown for lunch. Anna Wintour of 'Vogue' organized the get-together. At the time, Christie's was conducting an auction of Diana's 79 dresses which raised $5 million for charity ($3.26 million from the auction and $1.74 million from catalog sales and preview tickets). Of Tony Blair, Diana told Tina, "I think at last I will have someone who will know how to use me. He's told me he wants me to go on some missions . . . I’d really, really like to go to China." In July 1997, the crown colony of Hong Kong was returned back to China. The Alastair Campbell's 2007 book, 'The Blair Years' mentioned Tony Blair had met with Diana before and after he became Prime Minister. It was made known, "It's pretty clear they were discussing some kind of new role for her. He thought she could do a brilliant job as a kind of ambassador for his vision of modernized Britain. The Princess was intrigued by the idea. She liked the image of the country Blair wanted to project and thought she could make a contribution. She was very excited about it."
In November 1997, the Free University of Berlin held a semester-long lecture series. It was open to the public and took place inside a hall that could accommodate 164 people. Called 'Myth and Politics: Diana – from the Princess of Wales to the Queen of Hearts', the assistant professor Sigrid Koch-Baumgarten elaborated, "We got interested in understanding this phenomenon and its roots and examining the political effects . . . (Students) don't get any credits. If they go, it's out of pure interest." Of Diana's death, Sarah Bradford recalled, "It was the most extraordinary thing I've ever seen in my lifetime in this country. It was just a wave of emotion – unthinking emotion." At the time, Queen Elizabeth II expressed, "I have done my best with Prince Phillip's constant love and help to interpret correctly through the years of our marriage and of my reign as your Queen and we shall as a family try together to do so in the future."
Historian David Cannadine made the observation in 2002, "If we look at the Monarchy from the 1830s to the present day (2002) one point above all other stands out and that is, the present Queen's reign when taken as a whole is very much Queen Victoria's reign but in reverse. In Queen Victoria's reign the British Monarchy began as a small scale thing and became grander and grander and grander. In the present Queen's reign it began (in June 1953) very grand and it's becoming smaller and smaller and smaller or at least it ought to be, becoming smaller and smaller and smaller. But making thing smaller is much harder than making thing bigger." Historian John Grigg added, "There would have been 3 Royal stars in this century (until 2002): the previous Prince of Wales who became Edward the VIII, the Princess of Wales - Princess Diana, and another, the Queen's Mother." Richard Kay believed, "I think William will be a massive shot in the arm for the Monarchy. I think it will be a complete transformation of the Monarchy and I think we will then, by then, see the Monarchy much more like its European cousins. It will be a slim down version of what it is today (or during the Diana's years)."