Late Princess of Wales, Diana had her title of ‘Her Royal Highness’ removed when she ended her 15 years of royal marriage with Prince Charles in 1996.
But she had already made clear in her famous candid interview that she would rather be the “Queen of people’s hearts”.
Diana had already filled that role for millions and millions of people around the world for years, and it was no surprise. When Princess Diana joined the royal family on her wedding day in 1981, she was barely 20 years old. She found many of the royal traditions stuffy and outdated.
She went about breathing on to a new life into the royal family.
One of the most important ways she changed was in her interactions with the public. Diana indeed understood the importance of breaking down barriers or restrictions very quickly, and she made a conscious effort to bond with them.
But the question is how did she do this?
Well, to answer that, it is simple: by watching soap operas. She once told the author, Andrew Morton, “If I go out and about, whether it be to Birmingham, Liverpool or any other place, I can always pick up on a television program and then you are on the same level”.
Diana added: “This I have decided for myself. It works very well. Everybody watches it and I say, ‘Did you see so and so? Wasn’t it funny or sad when this or that happened?’ You are not the Princess and they the public, it’s the same level”.
Princess Diana’s methods clearly worked. And she would always have people in the crowd laughing along with her in a fraction of seconds. She liked to wear disguises so that she could easily mingle with the public in the outside world without her being noticed.
Her disguises were very much unique. She would wear a black wig when she wanted to go out incognito, and she also allowed Freddie Mercury to dress her as a man so she could go to a gay bar.
The mother of two, Diana also made it her mission to instil a sense of normalcy in her sons’ lives.
She indeed made sure that they did the same things as other children their age does. After she picked them up from their school, they would often go to the local supermarket, Saintsbury’s for some snacks.
Her ways were unique just like her. Diana gave her two boys pocket money and would take them to The London Dungeon, zoo, and sometimes cinema too. At Christmas, William and Harry waited in line like the other children to meet Santa at the department store.
When that time Prime Minister, Tony Blair referred to Diana as “The People’s Princess” after her death 20 years ago, he truly identified exactly what she was to the public. Today, Diana would be proud that her sons are continuing what she started with all their hearts and souls.