The Crown: What was in Diana’s divorce settlement?

The new season of ‘The Crown’ explores the dissolution of Charles and Diana’s marriage

Joanna Whitehead
Saturday 12 November 2022 20:15 GMT
The Crown Season 5 trailer

Season five of The Crown is set to light up Netflix screens once more, with the next series set to drop on Wednesday 9 November.

Imelda Staunton will take over from Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth II in the smash hit historical drama, while Elizabeth Debicki and Dominic West will take the parts of Diana and Charles respectively.

Set in the 1990s, season five will focus on the breakdown of their marriage, including the then Prince’s extramarital affair with Camilla Parker Bowles.

Their secret relationship became public knowledge after the separation of Charles and Diana, with the publication of an intimate telephone call between the two, known as “Camillagate”.

But when did the pair separate and eventually divorce - and what was in Princess Diana’s divorce settlement? Here’s everything you need to know.

When did Diana and Charles separate?

Diana cited her unhappy marriage with Prince Charles as a factor in developing bulimia ( Photo by Steve Wood/REX )

The royal couple first met in 1977 when Diana was just 16-years-old and Charles was 29. At the time, Charles was dating Diana’s older sister, Sarah, and was visiting for a weekend of pheasant shooting.

Charles proposed to Diana in February 1981, and the pair were married in a lavish ceremony at Westminster Abbey in July that year.

The couple welcomed their first child, Prince William, in June 1982, while Prince Harry followed in September 1984.

After a turbulent relationship, their separation was announced in late 1992. Their divorce was finalised in 1996.

What was in Princess Diana’s divorce settlement?

Diana, Princess of Wales in 1992 (Getty)

In the new season of The Crown, Princess Diana is seen asking for £35m as part of her divorce settlement.

In reality, she was reported to have received a lump sum of £17m, plus an additional £400,000 per year.

Diana was allowed to keep her title “Princess of Wales”, but was required to give up the title of “Her Royal Highness”.

Queen Elizabeth II was reported to have been happy for Diana to retain the title, but Charles was rumoured to have pushed for its removal.

At the time, Buckingham Palace said that Diana would continue to be “regarded as a member of the royal family” and “will from time to time receive invitations to state and national public occasions” at the invitation “of the sovereign or the Government.”

Charles and Diana were given equal custody to Prince William and Prince Harry, a decision that was said to be relatively straightforward as this arrangement was already well established and both boys spent much of their year at boarding school.

Diana enjoying a day out at Thorpe Park amusement park with Harry and William (Cliff Kent/PA) (PA Media)

Diana was also permitted to retain her apartment at Kensington Palace. Apartments eight and nine were entrusted for her exclusive use and stretched over three floors. She was also allowed to use the state apartments at St James’s Palace.

The departing royal was also allowed to keep the jewellery she amassed throughout her marriage, with the exception of the Cambridge Lover’s Knot tiara that Queen Elizabeth II gifted her as a wedding present. Prince William proposed to Kate Middleton with his mother’s engagement ring.

Last, but not least, Princess Diana was also allowed access to the royal family’s jets, so she could continue to travel in the style to which she was accustomed.

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