A previously unseen letter written by Diana, Princess of Wales has revealed that the late Princess felt “continuously misunderstood” and “extremely isolated” in the final years of her marriage.
The letter was written to the Princess’s friend Dudley Poplak, an interior designer who the royal couple had first met in 1981, when he worked at Highgrove House, their residence in Gloucestershire. Diana, whose marriage was already beyond repair, wrote about how she felt excluded from the Royal Family and claimed that she could see what was “coming to this country and this family”.
The letter was hand-written on a Kensington Palace letterhead and dated 3 December 1991 – just one year before The Prince and Princess of Wales announced their separation. It read:
“Dearest Dudley, I did so enjoy our lunch today – it was special for many reasons and in particular our conversation towards the end of our delicious meal.
I do feel extremely isolated more than ever now, as I see what’s coming to this country and this family.
During the last couple of years, I have been through a self-development programme which has brought a deep understanding of those who suffer and those who need love and support, wherever it’s in hospices or in the street.
I feel that you believe in me, Dudley, and you’ve no idea what this means to me as I am continuously misunderstood by those around me.
Please, may we continue our conversation in January, when the pace of life isn’t so fast and furious, as I’d care to ask for your advice and relay to you my inner thoughts.
Lots of love from,
Mr Poplak died in 2005, following which the letter from Diana is being sold by a private collector. Chris Albury from Dominic Winter Auctioneers spoke about the lot, saying: “The letter sent in December 1991 is poignant in that it was written only months before all the public falling out following the Morton biography.
“She must have been feeling even more isolated from the Windsors at a time when her marriage had fallen apart, and she had just told her version of her royal life to Morton, knowing that she was about to let a genie out of the bottle which would change her life for better or worse. This heartfelt letter offers a unique window into Diana’s inner-torment at that time.”
Mr Albury is referring to Andrew Morton’s book Diana: Her True Story which was published in 1992 and revealed that both The Prince and Princess of Wales had had extra-marital affairs. Mr Morton initially claimed to have received information from unattributed sources, but later admitted that it had been the Princess who had given him private details for his book.
Also for sale at the auction are two shorter letters from Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales sent in 2000 and 1991 respectively. Both letters thank Mr Poplak for sending them a book, and the letter from Prince Charles also expresses the Prince’s wish to meet Mr Poplak soon.
The items will be sold on 25 January. The letter by Diana, Princess of Wales, is expected to fetch around £800.