‘If I’d known that was the last time I was going to speak to my mother, the things I would have said to her’
This August will mark 22 years since Princess Diana died tragically in a car crash in Paris, with the twentieth anniversary prompting documentaries made in her memory, shops bringing back iconic fashion looks that she championed back in the day and a new memorial garden planted in her former home.
Princes William and Harry led the tributes, opening up for the first time about their mother’s death and how it affected them.
The two brothers have spoken about the mental health issues that losing a parent can trigger, with Prince Harry even opening up about the heartbreaking details of Princess Diana’s funeral earlier that year.
But in a one-off ITV documentary about Princess Diana, the princes went through their personal photo albums, sharing memories and opening up about their last conversation with their mother.
The princes, only 15 and 12 at the time, explained how they were at Balmoral with their extended family when they received a phone call from Princess Diana in Paris. They went on to talk about their regret at hurrying to get off the phone, not knowing it would be their last conversation.
‘At the time Harry and I were running around minding our own business, you know, playing with our cousins and having a very good time’ explained Prince William. ‘I think Harry and I were just in a desperate rush to say goodbye, you know, see you later and we’re going to go off.’
He continued: ‘If I’d known now obviously what was going to happen I wouldn’t have been so blasé about it and everything else. But that phone call sticks in my mind quite, quite heavily.’
‘As a kid I never enjoyed speaking to my parents on the phone,’ Prince Harry added. ‘And we spent far too much time speaking on the phone rather than speaking to each other, because of just the way the situation was.’
Prince William has previously spoken about the final phone call with The Telegraph. ‘I can’t really necessarily remember what I said, but all I do remember is probably, you know, regretting for the rest of my life how short the phone call was,’ he explained.
He continued: ‘And if I’d known that that was the last time I was going to speak to my mother the things I would have said to her.’ He added: ‘Looking back on it now, it’s incredibly hard. I have to sort of deal with that for the rest of my life.’
‘We won’t be doing this again,’ Prince William explained at the documentary screening at Kensington Palace. ‘We won’t speak as openly and publicly about her again, because we feel that hopefully this film will provide the other side: from her closest family and friends, that you might not have heard before, from those who knew her best, and those who want to protect her memory and want to remind people of the person she was.’
He continued: ‘Harry and I feel very strongly that we want to celebrate her life, and this is a tribute from her sons to her.’