Princess Diana Was Convinced Kensington Palace Had Spy Cameras

For Princess Diana, living life within the British royal family was no easy task. The princess wed Prince Charles in 1981 after a short courtship and engagement. Unfortunately, she had no idea what she was getting into. As the wife of one of the most visible men on the planet, Princess Diana became a massive celebrity in her own right. Later in her life, the princess would speak openly about how difficult this was for her.

In interviews following her separation and subsequent divorce from Prince Charles, Princess Diana got candid about the hardships of royal life. She also spoke about building a life for herself that wasn’t in the middle of a media storm.

In fact, things had become so dire for Princess Diana during her time in the British royal family that she was convinced spy cameras were hidden in the palace.

Princess Diana wanted people to know her side of the story

Living life under a microscope is extremely challenging. For the British royal family, who choose not to respond or react to rumors, it’s even more troubling when someone feels like they can’t comment or defend themselves.

During her marriage, the princess used the press to put a spotlight on her charity work and to bring attention to things like the AIDS crisis. However, following her divorce from Prince Charles, Princess Diana wanted the world to know what royal life was like from her perspective.

“I can understand,” Prince William revealed in the documentary, Diana, 7 Days. “Having sometimes been in those situations, you feel incredibly desperate and it is very unfair that things are being said that are untrue. The easiest thing to do is just to say or go to the media yourself. Open that door. [But] once you’ve opened it you can never close it again.”

Unfortunately, all of that media attention only fueled the public and press’ obsession with the Princess of Wales.

Picture dated 14 November 1992 of Princess Diana leaving the first anti-AIDS bookshop in Paris. Diana, Princess of Wales died in hospital early 31 August after a midnight car crash in central Paris in which her friend the Egyptian millionaire film-producer Dodi al-Fayed and driver were also killed. At the time of the crash, the car was being pursued by paparazzi press photographers on motorcycles
Picture dated 14 November 1992 of Princess Diana leaving the first anti-AIDS bookshop in Paris. Diana, Princess of Wales died in hospital early 31 August after a midnight car crash in central Paris in which her friend the Egyptian millionaire film-producer Dodi al-Fayed and driver were also killed. At the time of the crash, the car was being pursued by paparazzi press photographers on motorcycles. | Vincent Amalvy/ AFP via Getty Images

Princess Diana ditched her security team following her divorce from Prince Charles

Amid her separation from Prince Charles in 1992, Princess Diana was desperate to step away from the spotlight. “Over the next few months, I will be seeking a more suitable way of combining a meaningful public role with, hopefully, a more private life,” she said in 1993 at a benefit lunch for the Headway National Injuries Association.

Additionally, Princess Diana ditched her security team once her divorce was finalized. For over a decade, she had been hounded, followed, and looked over, and she’d had enough. Once her divorce was finalized, the princess was left only with a small staff. She had a cleaner, cook, dresser, and her butler, Paul Burrell. She also chose to use police protection only when she had high profile events instead of having an armed security team.

Prince William At Guards Polo Club Being Comforted By His Mother, Princess Diana.
Prince William At Guards Polo Club Being Comforted By His Mother, Princess Diana. | Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images

Princess Diana was convinced she was being spied on

A lot of the issues the princess had with the royal family and the press were because she was convinced she was being spied on. In his book, Diana: Her True Story, Andrew Morton recalls the princess telling him about the moment she knew her marriage was over.

“She remembers the occasion well, driving out of the claustrophobia of Kensington Palace with its spy cameras, watchful courtiers and prison walls to her favourite stretch of beach on the Dorset coast,” Morton explained.

It turns out that the princess was not being paranoid regarding the spy cameras. In 1998, the National Security Agency admitted to spying on Princess Diana. “America’s spy chiefs admitted last night they snooped on Princess Diana for years — and learned some of her most intimate love secrets,” The Mirror reported at the time. “The Daily Record claimed that the NSA intercepts have gone on right until she died in the Paris car crash with Dodi Fayed.”