Britain’s Royal Family disapproved of Princess Diana’s many lovers, a court was told yesterday (21.11.07).
The jury at the inquest into the princess’ death heard Diana had relationships with Major James Hewitt, rugby player Will Carling, close friend James Gilbey, bodyguard Barry Mannakee and Dodi Fayed after splitting from husband Prince Charles in 1992.
Michael Gibbins, who worked as Diana’s private secretary for a year, was asked if there was disapproval from the royal household.
He replied: “I’m not sure that I was directly aware of that but by inference certainly.”
Gibbins also said he warned her about the potentially negative reaction to her decision to take Princes William and Harry on holiday with the Al Fayed
family in the summer of 1997.
But he smiled as he recalled her apparent lack of concern.
Asked by Michael Mansfield QC, representing Dodi’s father Harrod’s boss Mohamed, what her reaction had been, he said: “I don’t think there was much of a reaction.”
Diana also feared her calls were being monitored.
Gibbins said: “She never expressed that concern, but her
actions were such, in terms of changing her telephone number, that it was clear that that was a concern to her, yes.”
The princess was killed in a Paris car crash on 31 August 31, 1997, along with Dodi and driver Henri Paul.
Gibbins revealed Diana’s butler Paul Burrell insisted on going to Paris to “look after” her even though there was no reason for him to go.
Diana was not wearing a seatbelt when her Mercedes crashed, but Gibbins said she had always insisted on wearing one and made him do likewise when they travelled together.
Mohamed Al Fayed has always claimed Diana and Dodi were killed by the British establishment as they were about to announce their engagement and she was pregnant.
However, Gibbin said he spoke to the princess just two days before her death and while she seemed happy, she didn’t mention an engagement or pregnancy.