Lady Pamela Hicks was apparently not the biggest fan of the People's Princess. The 84-year-old British aristocrat -- the first cousin of Prince Philip was a member of Queen Elizabeth's bridal party in 1947 -- doesn't hold back speaking with Vanity Fair about the late Princess Diana. Touting her new memoir Daughter of Empire: Life as a Mountbatten, Hicks tells the magazine that Prince William and Harry's late, beloved mother was "really spiteful" to husband Prince Charles and to much of the royal family.
"She had enormous charisma, she was beautiful, she was very good at empathy with the general crowd," concede hicks of Diana, who died at age 36 in a 1997 car crash. "[But] she had no feeling at all for her husband or his family. Quite the reverse!"
Argues Hicks of Diana, whose private struggles in her marriage are now well-known: "She was really spiteful, really unkind to [Charles]--and, my God, he's a man who needs support and encouragement." Diana and Charles, now 64, divorced in 1996 after 15 unhappy years together. "[The marriage] absolutely destroyed him. He looked grey and ghost-like," Hicks argues. "Now of course he's blossomed again."
Lady Pamela, whose daughter India Hicks served as a bridesmaid at Diana and Charles' 1981 wedding, continues in her tirade: "She made everybody believe she’d been thrown to the wolves. Such nonsense! She was given the Queen’s favorite lady-in-waiting, Sue Hussey, to help her, to teach her."
She adds: "But she didn't want to be told anything . .. Instead, she wanted to listen to her music and go disco-ing or to some jive concert."
"She didn't try," Hicks surmises. "She had no need to try because she saw the people admired her, then they admired her more. She reckoned she was the star."