Prince William Once Told His Mother Princess Diana to Leave England and Live in Exile, Royal Photographer Recalls

When she was alive Princess Diana had a lot of encounters with the paparazzi as she was followed just about everywhere she went. One royal photographer has recalled a conversation he had with the Princess of Wales while trying to take her picture and what she said about her eldest son, Prince William, telling her that she should leave England.

Prince William sitting next to his mother, Princess Diana, at an event in London in 1995
Prince William sitting next to his mother, Princess Diana, at an event in London in 1995 | Rota/Pool/Getty Images

Princess Diana stayed at a famous actor’s home in the U.S. to avoid the paparazzi

It was almost impossible for Diana to avoid the paparazzi in the U.K. but she did have a hideaway in the U.S. when she stayed at the home of actor Kurt Russell. In 1991, the movie star had a premiere in London and was seated next to the princess. He offered his Colorado Ranch as a place where she could go with her sons to get away from the photogs.

“During the evening we talked about the paparazzi and the difficulty she had going different places and stuff so I said, well, if you ever get a chance you know come over to the ranch, we’ve got a good long driveway and it’s hard for the paparazzi to get in there so maybe you’d like to do that,” Russell revealed during an appearance on The Late Late Show with James Corden adding that a few years later Diana took him up on the offer.

“I guess Diana wanted to go with the boys and so they were welcome. And they came and stayed for 10 days at the ranch, and they had a good time,” Russell said.

(L) Princess Diana smiling for a photograph, (R) Kurt Russell waving to the camera
(L): Princess Diana smiling for a photograph | Patrick Riviere/Getty Images, (R): Kurt Russell waving to the camera | Mark Davis/Getty Images

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Royal photographer recalls Diana saying that Prince William thought she should live somewhere else

Back in England Princess Diana wasn’t able to escape the cameras and one day confronted a photographer when she had enough. That photographer was Arthur Edwards and in the documentary Diana: Last Days of a Princess, he remembered the conversation he had with her.

“Suddenly, she strode down some steps and very rapidly got into a boat. I remember picking up the camera and she said ‘no pictures,” Edwards recalled (per The Express). “It looked like she wanted to speak to us. She came over and said ‘Why are you here?’ William told me to leave England and go live somewhere else.”

According to Edwards, the princess was “tearful” when she spoke to him and he admitted: “That started getting me a little be stressed because I thought ‘I don’t want to be the reason why she’s going to live in exile.'”

The princess’s friend says Diana considered living in Pakistan

Princess Diana speaking to her friend Jemima Khan (later Goldsmith) during a visit to Shaukat Khanum Hospital in Lahore, Pakistan
Princess Diana speaking to her friend Jemima Khan (Goldsmith) during a visit to Shaukat Khanum Hospital in Lahore, Pakistan | Anwar Hussein/Getty Images

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Diana’s close friend, Jemima Goldsmith, has said that the princess did consider living elsewhere and spoke to her about moving to Pakistan when she was in a relationship with heart surgeon Hasnat Khan.

“Diana was madly in love with Hasnat Khan and wanted to marry him, even if that meant living in Pakistan, and that’s one of the reasons why we became friends. She wanted to know how hard it had been for me to adapt to life in Pakistan,” Goldsmith explained in reference to her own marriage to Imran Khan which brought her to the country.

Diana and Khan eventually split and the princess continued to live in England. After Khan, she dated Dodi Fayed. He and Diana were both killed in 1997 after the car they were traveling crashed into a pillar in Paris while trying to get away from the paparazzi.