Diana laughed when Charles proposed – and what he did after wasn’t very romantic

When Prince Charles got down on one knee and asked Lady Diana Spencer to be his royal bride, the couple had only met 12 times.

The future Princess Diana was just 20 when her future husband invited her to Windsor Castle to ask her a question that would change her life forever.

When she arrived he said: "I've missed you so much", before taking her to the castle's homely nursery.

But his proposal wasn't exactly the most romantic gesture, and what he did immediately afterwards was far from a special moment with his bride-to-be.

Speaking in a Channel 5 documentary Charles and Di: The Truth Behind Their wedding, royal expert Ingrid Seward says Diana actually started laughing when he asked the question.

She said: "She burst out laughing, I think that was probably her nerves.

"She didn't think it was the most romantic of proposals but she had the proposal."

Royal biographer Christopher Wilson added: "She was completely bowled over by this, didn't see it coming."

In a later interview Diana revealed further details about the proposal.

She said: "He said do you realise that one day you'll be Queen. And I said 'I love you so much, I love you so much'.

"He said 'whatever loves means'. He said it then. So I thought, that was great. I thought he meant it."

And the moments after Diana said yes weren't exactly romantic either, and rather than celebrating Charles picked up the phone.

Mr Wilson said: "He didn't pick her up in her arms and embrace or do any of the things we might do when we propose marriage to the one that we love.

"He rang his mum, simply to say there, I've done it now. You've asked me to get married to somebody and I've fixed it.

"What he'd done was he'd finally found a wife."

Over the next few months Diana became more and more nervous and unsettled as the pressure to the wedding built, and cracks in their relationship began to show early on.

But a moment in their pre-wedding interview, carried out just a few days before the big day, gave one of the biggest signs of what was to come .

Angela Rippon, the anchor on BBC news, and ITV's Andrew Gardener were the two lucky journalists invited to quiz the couple.

Their questions had to be pre-approved and they were warned not to stray from the script, and Charles and Diana came across as a couple very much in love and looking forward to their wedding.

But looking back with hindsight, there was one moment of the interview which revealed the heartbreaking reality.


Angela watched the interview back in full for the first time for the documentary.

She said: "With the knowledge of hindsight you read so much more into body language, what was said, looks that were given, reactions.

"That's the value of hindsight isn't it."

In the final few moments of the interview she wishes the couple a lifetime of happiness. Charles looks Diana, but she looks down at the floor.

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