1 July 1961: the Birth of Diana, Princess of Wales

The Honorable Diana Frances Spencer was born on 1 July 1961, the youngest daughter of John Spencer, Viscount Althorp – later Earl Spencer, and Frances Roche. She was born at Park House, near Sandringham, Norfolk and was styled Lady Diana Spencer after her father inherited the Spencer Earldom in 1975.

A young Diana Spencer (Photo: Pinterest)

It is well documented that she came from a broken home. Her parents divorced, and when she was seven-years-old her father gained custody of the children, a rarity at the time.

She married Charles, Prince of Wales on 29 July 1981, at St Paul’s Cathedral, London. She was the first Englishwoman to marry the Prince of Wales for 300 years. On her marriage, she became the third highest ranking female in the United Kingdom Order of Precedence after the Queen and the Queen Mother. Their sons William and Harry were born in 1982 and 1984 respectively. Diana was godmother to seventeen children.

Diana Wedding
Diana, Princess of Wales with her father on her wedding day (Photo: Pinterest)

Diana and Charles separated in December 1992 and divorced in August 1996 after her infamous television interview the previous year, in which she described the unhappiness within her marriage.

Diana died on 31 August 1997 after a devastating car crash in Paris and was buried at Althorp, the Spencer family’s Northamptonshire estate, on Saturday 6 September 1997.

Diana was patron of over 100 charities during her lifetime. One such charity, Child Bereavement UK, now has her son William as its patron. She undertook unglamorous roles in publicising charities that helped the homeless, those with HIV and AIDS, leprosy and supported a landmine campaign with the Red Cross.  She had developed into a passionate humanitarian.

Diana, Princess of Wales publicising a campaign against the use of landmines in 1997 (Photo: Pinterest)

Last year I visited Diana: Her Fashion Story – the Kensington Palace exhibition, you can read my post about the exhibition here. This exhibits over twenty of Diana’s iconic outfits worn during three decades of her life. The exhibition has recently been refreshed with outfits that have not previously been displayed.

Diana's Dresses
Dresses from Diana: Her Fashion Story, Kensington Palace

To see my post Windsor is Royal Wedding Ready! click here. And to read my post Royal Weddings at Windsor Castle: a History click here. Both of these posts were written for the marriage of her son, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

St George's Chapel Windsor Castle
St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle




Images author’s own unless stated

8 thoughts on “1 July 1961: the Birth of Diana, Princess of Wales

  1. lovely post, such a lovely beautiful lady, can’t believe how long ago this all happened, my daughter was one on the day she was buried, and it was the day after my sons birthday that she died, so sad. I remember watching it on tv, my friends went to the motorway junction to watch the car go past lots of people around.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know people who went up to London the night before the burial, but I didn’t go. My children were small and I worked nights in a care home. The night she died I watched TV from the first ‘Breaking News’ when they thought she’d just broken her arm. It was a huge shock, wasn’t it?

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s