"When leaving an old life for a new one, it's best to travel light," J.D. Reed observed. "Diana, however, was burdened by a royal baggage train. As she moved out of the royal sphere, her circle of friends (including heart transplant pioneer Dr. Christiaan Barnard) helped her find stability." 

The song 'The Miracle of Love' by Eurythmics hit the chart in 1986. Martin Bashir, 1995, 'Panorama': "Around 1986, again according to the (1994) biography written by Jonathan Dimbleby about your husband, he says that your husband renewed his relationship with Mrs Camilla Parker-Bowles. Were you aware of that?" Diana: "Yes I was, but I wasn't in a position to do anything about it." 

Penny Junor explained, "Aristocratic, well-bred families have, when their own marriage has staled or they have grown bored with one another or it hasn't worked out, for whatever reasons, they traditionally have not divorced but they have pursued relationships elsewhere and remained together, for the sake, in aristocratic families, for the estate and you know, the inheritance and for the children. Now (in 2001) it seems to me that, this is what they had." 

Martin Bashir: "Do you think the Prince of Wales will ever be king?" Diana: "I don't think any of us know the answer to that. And obviously it's a question that's in everybody's head. But who knows, who knows what fate will produce, who knows what circumstances will provoke?" 

Nicholas Owen, 2007: "The 'Panorama' program was quite extraordinary of course. It's difficult to imagine now (in 2007) in an era when there's so much reality television and people on television all the time laying bare their soul but my goodness at the time, for Diana to do it, was absolutely stunning and she of course careful not tell anybody about it until the last minute." 

Hannah Gordon, 2007, 'The Queen A Life In Film: The Diana Years': "When Lady Diana Spencer first came under the glare of the media spotlight back in 1980 nobody could have foretold the impact she would have on the Royal family. Over the next 17 years (1980-1997), Diana would shake the Monarchy to its very foundations." 

Caroline of Brunswick, former wife of the Prince of Wales between 1795-1797. Lady Elizabeth Longford made the point in August 1996, "That whole situation was much more baroque. If Diana keeps her head down, she has more hope of making a go of things." 

Joseph Sanders recounted, "Diana wanted to be an ambassador for the United Kingdom. She invited John Major, discussed it with him and he agreed it would be a good idea. He has to get permisision from the Royal family and they block it. And I was there on the morning that she got a fax saying that unfortunately she couldn't be an ambassador for the United Kingdom and she was absolutely furious. She was really, really crossed. She started screaming and said, 'I can't understand why they treat me like this.'" 

1947: Princess Elizabeth (future Queen of England) visited South Africa. Constitutional expert Baron St John of Fawsley, 2007: "She has been more responsible than anyone else for the transformation of the (British) Empire into the Commonwealth (family of nations) and that is why it has lasted. Those early experiences in South Africa made a profound influence on the Queen and from that day onwards she took an immense interest in the Commonwealth and remember the Commonwealth is her thing. She doesn't have to take advice from the Prime Minister here. There's all sort of prime ministers and other people involved and that gives her a freedom of manoeuvre." 

Between 1952 and 2015, Queen Elizabeth II remained the one symbol of continuity as Great Britain witnessed 12 prime ministers took office including Margaret Thatcher and Tony Blair. Back in 1997, Tony told the people via the press before going into St Mary Magdalen Church for the Sunday morning service, "I feel like everyone else in this country today. I am utterly devastated . . . She was the People's Princess and that is how she will stay, how she will remain in our hearts and our memories for ever." The marriage of the Queen to the Duke of Edinburgh remained the longest of the reigning monarch in British history, providing continuity for both their family and Great Britain during the period of unprecedented change in British history. Her Majesty had said, "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 Andrew Roberts: "It's one of the best things about the British Constitution is it allows somebody to advise, encourage and warn a Prime Minister at the height of his political power who might not listen to anybody else, in fact, but does listen to the Queen."

As Head of the Commonwealth, Baron St John of Fawsley believed, "I think it's very significant because as the great Lord Salisbury said, the commonest mistake in politics is to stick to the carcass of dead policies. And here (the Commonwealth) was a great vision of the future and a transition and an opening into a new world and a new series of concept. The role of the Queen is really first among equal not somebody ruling over a lot of different countries and that was very important change because that enable the Commonwealth to advance on a new path and it's also suited the talent of Her Majesty who doesn’t believe in imposing her will on other people."  

Andrew Roberts: "The Queen is not only Head of the Commonwealth but she is also Head of all the individual countries in the Commonwealth. She is their Queen as much as she is the British Queen but at the same time, of course, she lives here (in the U.K.). She is primarily Queen of England and therefore connection with the British prime ministers are much closer than any of the others."

Blog Archive