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Letter: Monarchs aren't meant to lead

Letter: Monarchs aren't meant to leadA SINGLE phrase in Tina Brown's account of their lunch (Review, 21 September) pinpoints the basic factor in Princess Diana's tragic life - "Charles is not a leader". For despite the trappings that surround the monarchy when acting as the nation's representative, a constitutional monarch is not its "leader".

The position is best described as an hereditary "eminence grise", accumulating wisdom and exercising influence that can be achieved only in private. Consort to the heir to a throne operating within such constraints was incompatible with the stardom for which Diana was destined and longed. Fortunately both of Prince William's blood families are well endowed with genes and traditions conducive to the successful discharge of this difficult role.

Lewis Stretch

Godmanchester, Cambs