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  #1801  
Old 07-11-2016, 06:25 PM
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Is it really speculation though when a credible source is given? I think someone living in the same house at the time would be quite credible.
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  #1802  
Old 07-11-2016, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Osipi View Post
Is it really speculation though when a credible source is given? I think someone living in the same house at the time would be quite credible.

Depends if said house is a two bedroom unit or 25 room palace


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  #1803  
Old 07-11-2016, 06:39 PM
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Originally Posted by royal rob View Post
Depends if said house is a two bedroom unit or 25 room palace


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The house is Highgrove. Berry talks about her interactions with the couple. Fights were quite commonplace and not confined to closed quarters.
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  #1804  
Old 07-11-2016, 07:53 PM
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I find Berry a particularly interesting and important source. She started working at Highgrove in November 1985 so was privy to their behaviour from just before serious cracks began appearing in the relationship through the time the rot really set in and on to the separation. Ken Wharfe is also a good and, I believe, reliable, source of evidence. And we have Diana in her own words on New Year's Eve 1989 when she didn't realise she was being recorded and thus wasn't playing to the media.
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  #1805  
Old 07-11-2016, 08:11 PM
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I have to admit that while reading Berry's work, my heart went out to Diana. After a particularly bad fight with Charles then stomping off, Wendy said she could hear Diana on the back stairs just sobbing her heart out. It was a quandary for her as she didn't really know what to do. Go comfort Diana or remember "her place" as staff.

As they say, "the proof is in the pudding". Berry and Diana had a close enough relationship that there are pictures of her with Diana in the pool at a staff pool party and when Berry left service, a party was thrown for her at Diana's favorite restaurant San Lorenzo in London which Diana attended. Of course there was always the divide between upstairs and downstairs but the staff at Highgrove did come to know their residents well.
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  #1806  
Old 07-11-2016, 08:39 PM
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We recently watched the two documentaries on Charles and Diana that were done with Alastair Burnet, the first one being the interview made to refute the gossip claims of the early 80s and the second one that followed Charles and Diana for a year. The really cringe-worthy thing about the former is that Charles and Diana's "handlers" must have thought that it would be a good idea to sit Their Royal Highnesses down and require them to answer ridiculous personal questions about, for example, Charles' interest in the occult and vegetarianism, and the huge number of new outfits that Diana bought early in her royal career. It's kind of mind-boggling.
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  #1807  
Old 07-12-2016, 04:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roslyn View Post
I find Berry a particularly interesting and important source. She started working at Highgrove in November 1985 so was privy to their behaviour from just before serious cracks began appearing in the relationship through the time the rot really set in and on to the separation. Ken Wharfe is also a good and, I believe, reliable, source of evidence. And we have Diana in her own words on New Year's Eve 1989 when she didn't realise she was being recorded and thus wasn't playing to the media.
I'd hardly say speculation. Berry saw arguments, so did other people. There was one incident at a polo match, later in their marriage where they started arguing and pushing each other. If they do that, forgetting where they are, in public, and there were reports from staff abuot their shouting matches at home and indeed guests heard them yelling - I'd say there were plenty of rows. And all couples have rows, so I'd put money on it that Di and Charles had more than most

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Originally Posted by Mermaid1962 View Post
The really cringe-worthy thing about the former is that Charles and Diana's "handlers" must have thought that it would be a good idea to sit Their Royal Highnesses down and require them to answer ridiculous personal questions about, for example, Charles' interest in the occult and vegetarianism, and the huge number of new outfits that Diana bought early in her royal career. It's kind of mind-boggling.
I think that it was done to counter the gossip that their marriage was a bit difficult and to discuss varous issues that had come up in the 80s about Charles. When he married, I think that he had begun to get into varous interests that he had sort of suppressed for a long time.. He was intellectually curious and once he had done his military stint, and started the Princes trust, I think he investigated various ideas that he had always wanted to get to know about and of course the public ridiculed him for them. So if there hadn't been the whole "Is their marriage failing thing", I would have found it quite interesting to see how he dealt with discussion of these issues.
And at the time Diana was only just getting into her charity wrok and interests so a lot of the focus on her side was going to be about her weight and her clothes...
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  #1808  
Old 07-12-2016, 05:29 PM
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Don't quote me on this but if I remember right, sometimes when doing interviews with certain royals, their staff or those surrounding them, it is all set up in advance and questions are submitted for approval and then scratched or put on the list for the actual interview. The people being interviewed usually have a clear idea of the questions that are going to be asked before it even starts.

Therefore, questions on the state of the marriage, anything remotely hinting at politics or other "hot" topics don't make it. A lot of staff and handlers also sign a confidential agreement and they wouldn't want break that. If there's one thing I've learned from reading mega books about the British Royal Family is that those that work for them find it a privilege and an honor to hold the positions that they do and generally will not cross the line when it comes to talking about who they work for.

This is why I like Berry's book. She does tell about the good times and the bad times and the ugly times but its done tastefully without denigrating either Charles or Diana. She doesn't reveal any "dirty secrets" and is chock full of amusing anecdotes of every day life around Highgrove.

Makes me wonder how old George and Charlotte will be when they get their first supersoakers.
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  #1809  
Old 07-12-2016, 05:39 PM
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wel yes of course, all interviews with well known people are done like this. but I dont approve of staff writing books when thye have signed agreemetn NOT to do so. Some staff leaked secrerts to the press, in the early years of teh marraige, and as the marital problems became more explosive and better known, other staff like Berry wrote their books.
I knwo that royal staff esp domestics aren't paid well and I can sympathise a littlte bit but not with actual books. To be honest I dotn think we have to depend on Berry to tell us that life at Highgrove was full of "door slamming rows". There is FAR too much evidence of a very angry argumentative marriage. While i dont approve of her writing the book, I am sure that she is spot on in describing rows. She may not always know who started them or what started them but I cant imagine that anyone would dispute that they happened a lot..
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  #1810  
Old 07-12-2016, 05:58 PM
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That's just it. Its not a book which is a "tell all" that comes from authors digging up dirt and having sources that "are high up in the palace" and "close to the couple" and whatever else they use and although the book is focused around Charles and Diana's life at Highgrove, there is a lot in the book that gives good insight into just how their lifestyle was, how mischievous William and Harry were and how the royals interacted with their staff and just gives a general look at the life and times of Charles and Diana from a person that lived there. Berry was telling the story from her own perspective and her own experiences.

The book was published in 1995 which was two years before the fatal crash in Paris.
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  #1811  
Old 07-12-2016, 06:43 PM
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Still wrong. She signed a confidentiality agreement and broke ti for money. Do you think the book woud have sold all that well had it not been for hte Waleses well known marital troubles? IF it was just cute little bits about Wil and H etc.
However the issue is, is she a credible source? I imagine she is, yes, fairly much so. If she didn't take sides, odds are that she's more creidble than other staff who did have one side they favoured, or had been fired/left their jobs and were at outs with Diana...
Quite simply, we dont need her to tell us that there were bad rows, I thin that there is plenty of evidence from many sources
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  #1812  
Old 07-13-2016, 01:19 AM
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Did she sign such an agreement though?

Many of these so called agreements are quite general and others were never signed anyway but just presented.

The stricter signing of the confidence agreements came after this book was published as they realised that the agreements weren't water-tight (they still aren't anyway as they aren't binding all over the world so a book can be published in say Russia and then translated into English and there is nothing the BRF can do about it).
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  #1813  
Old 07-13-2016, 03:00 AM
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I've just been rereading 'The Housekeeper's Diary' by Wendy Berry, having clawed it out of the bookcase of a friend who borrowed it a decade ago and 'forgot' to return it. It's amazing how little one retains of the content of such books after not reading them for years and years!

I think Mrs Berry is quite balanced. She doesn't repeat huge quarrels verbatim between Charles and Diana but you do get a sense of the awful icy atmosphere at Highgrove at times, and how when the royal couple were happy and contented the staff took their mood from them.

Charles's consideration for others is recorded, mixed with demands for his staff to go the extra mile to the extent of having to drive 90 miles to Windsor to deliver something he'd forgotten, Diana's freezing out of staff for no conceivable reason that they knew, upsetting loyal people like her dresser terribly, the separate arrangements made for everything including meals in those last few years of cohabitation.

There's not an awful lot on William and Harry's activities, though she does say that they would hold staff to ransom going to and from the house sometimes, on pain of being squirted with water pistols they had to pay a 20 or 50p fine!
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  #1814  
Old 07-13-2016, 04:33 AM
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I have to say that while I'm sure Charles can be a selfish employer, Diana's behaviour was probably a lot worse to deal with. She froze out Paul B's wife Maria, (she was her dresser right?) for no apparent reason and he basically seems to have taken it and put his employer before his wife. and she did that to other staff as well. Its really hard to understand or excuse without feeling that there were serious psychological problems
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  #1815  
Old 07-13-2016, 02:40 PM
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Have you ever read the Tina Brown article, "The Mouse That Roared"? It's still available on the Vanity Fair website, I think, and was recently republished as part of a Vanity Fair special on the Royals. Some of the questions were specifically to answer what was in that article, especially the questions about Diana being domineering and a perfectionist. Those stories, in turn, were drawing on reports that came out via Nigel Dempster and James Whitaker earlier on.

I can understand why the interview was done, but I think that it was unnecessary. The crowds that showed up during the Japanese and American tours would have shown up regardless.

When a person looks at that interview now, it's fairly obvious how uncomfortable they were doing it and how certain things were covered up. The part where Diana argues with Charles, insisting that they don't argue, is priceless.

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I think that it was done to counter the gossip that their marriage was a bit difficult and to discuss varous issues that had come up in the 80s about Charles.
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  #1816  
Old 07-13-2016, 06:34 PM
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Obviously, they were uncomfortable with it, because there were real problems n the marriage. But clearly the courtiers and possibly RF thought that BECAUSE there were real problems, it was a good idea to put out some PR to address criticism within the UK about Di and the 2 of them. Im sure they were a bit fearful that Di's immense popularity was a bit too good to be true, sicne they knew more about how she really was and what state the marriage was in, than the press did at the time, or the public. I would say that they felt "Yes she's attracted a LOT Of attention but we know how volatile she is, and how shaky the marriage has become within a few years, so we had better try and address these issues..."
And in a sense they were right. Yes Diana did attract a lot of attention for herself and C and for the RF, and yes she WAS, underneath all that charm and populartiy a very fragile person...It may have taken some time before she did crack to the point of talking to Morton and outing her marital problems but it DID happen... and it did give the RF's immense popularity a very serious bash...

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Originally Posted by Iluvbertie View Post
Did she sign such an agreement though?

Many of these so called agreements are quite general and others were never signed anyway but just presented.

Ththe BRF can do about it).
There is such a thing as "honour bound", even if the legalities dont hold her to strict confidence. I assumed that she signed the official secrets Act, and I feel that she had an honourable obligation not to talk about what she learned through her job...
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  #1817  
Old 07-13-2016, 06:58 PM
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There is such a thing as "honour bound", even if the legalities dont hold her to strict confidence. I assumed that she signed the official secrets Act, and I feel that she had an honourable obligation not to talk about what she learned through her job...
Correct me if I'm wrong here but from what I've found, letting my fingers do the surfing, is that:

"The offences under the Act, that can be committed only by persons who, as the case may be, are or have been crown servants, government contractors, or members of the security and intelligence services."

I don't think crown servants means royal housekeepers for the royals but rather those that work for the government.
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  #1818  
Old 07-13-2016, 07:04 PM
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I am not sure but even if they dont have to sign it (and I'd guess that they do) there is such a thing as a general requirement to keep things confidential. Staff joining the Highgrove household back around the late 80s and early 90s were apparently told that C and Di were at odds with each other and that the marriage was in name only..and whatever the legalities, Im sure there was an implicit bargain that if you worked for the two of them, you didnt go gabbing to your friends and you didn't talk to the press or write books about what you saw in the job.
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  #1819  
Old 07-14-2016, 09:44 PM
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A lot of people have taken Diana to task over the years for expressing her doubts over Charles fitness to be King, given she was trying to secure her own position viz him. but it wouldn't have worked if those doubts had not been there in the first place and she wants the first person to say so but the first to do so publicly.
It didn't work though, if you mean that it struck a note with the public. Some might agree with her but It made her look bad, as if she was angling for the "top job" that she felt he would find constricting. It was the final straw for the queen. If Charles wasn't able to fit in with the requirements of being king, that was a matter for the PM of the day and the royal advisers to discuss with him and the queen.. the succession is not a popularity contest or something that Diana could suggest "swapping around" at her will, it is laid down in law.
It just looked too blatant.. and it drove the queen to insist finally on a divorce.. so in the end, it did her no good.

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Source?
By my best knowledge Don Juan Carlos and Doña Sofía are not separated at all and live at La Zarzuela. (Also Princess Irene, Queen Sofía's sister, lives on the compound). Recently the former King and Queen have been seen doing events together.
Sorry I believe that technically they're not separated but they don't exactly live as a married couple. they do some family things together.. But they are much older than Diana...
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  #1820  
Old 07-15-2016, 10:28 PM
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As Diana mastered the art of royal public appearance, she began to upstage her husband. For every new speech he made, she would wear a different hairstyle or hat.
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