Moment Diana rocked the nation with speech about stepping away for normal life

Princess Diana wanted a more private life in an announcement she made years before her death as she made the same decision as her son Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle.

The late princess spoke at a charity lunch on December 3 in 1993 to make the announcement that she wanted “a more private life” with her priority being her children, Prince Harry and Prince William.

Diana’s speech meant she would be stepping away from royal duties with the blessing of the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh.

In the speech at the Headway charity lunch, Diana citied the media interest she has been under during her 12 years in royal working life.

Diana said: “But I was not aware of how overwhelming that attention would become. Nor the extent to which it would affect both my public duties and my personal life, in a manner that's been hard to bear.”

She continued: “I hope you can find it in your hearts to understand and to give me the time and space that has been lacking in recent years.”

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Her announcement, which came just years before her death, draws similarities to the decision made by Prince Harry who also stated the “media is a powerful force” when he spoke of his intentions to leave royal working life and the UK.

Even after her speech, Diana was still subject to much of the spotlight for the royal family and this particularly increased following her divorce from Prince Charles in 1996.

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On September 6 in 1997, Charles Spencer, younger brother to Diana, spoke about the impact the media had on his sister's life during a eulogy at her funeral on September 6 in 1997.

As reported by the Independent, he said Diana spoke “endlessly” of leaving Britain following her divorce “because of the treatment that she received at the hands of the newspapers.”

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Spencer continued: “I don't think she ever understood why her genuinely good intentions were sneered at by the media, why there appeared to be a permanent quest on their behalf to bring her down. It is baffling.”

However, there have been claims since Diana’s death that the press activity was not just driven by the media but from the princess herself.

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Tina Brown, the former Vanity Fair editor and author of forthcoming book, The Palace Papers-Inside the House of Windsor-the Truth and the Turmoil, claimed Diana tipped off the press.

In her controversial 2007 book, titled the Diana Chronicles, she stated that Diana would tell the press where she was going and had close relationships with certain members of the media.

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Speaking on a CTV's Canada AM in 2007, Brown said “(Diana) did want some privacy, but at the same time she couldn't resist giving them the images they wanted and one of the pictures she had allegedly tipped them off about was that she was on a boat with Dodi and said, ‘Take this picture of me on the boat’.”

At the time of her death, Diana was dating the son of former Harrods owner Mohammed al-Fayed, Dodi.

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Diana’s tragic death came after being pursued by paparazzi when the car she was in crashed on August 31, killing her, Dodi and driver Henri Paul in the Pont de l’Alma tunnel in Paris, France.

The royal family and the press have since made an agreement to not allow the frenzy of activity that was once seen in the 90s happen to another royal.

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