Princess Diana's nieces said she once 'protected' them from paparazzi on a beach

Samantha Grindell
·3 min read
diana and nieces thumb
Princess Diana's nieces were Tatler's March cover stars. Bob Thomas/Popperfoto/Getty Images
  • Princess Diana's twin nieces, Lady Amelia and Lady Eliza Spencer, are Tatler's March cover stars.

  • The siblings talked about Diana's "warm" and "loving" nature in the interview.

  • They also shared a story about Diana "protecting" them from the paparazzi in South Africa.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Princess Diana's twin nieces, Lady Eliza and Lady Amelia Spencer, are Tatler's March cover stars. Sacha Forbes, Tatler's associate editor, interviewed the sisters in their home country of South Africa.

The 28-year-olds are the youngest children of the late princess' brother, Charles. He's also the father of socialite and model Lady Kitty Spencer and Louis Spencer, as well as the Honorable Edmund Spencer, Lady Lara Spencer, and Lady Charlotte Diana Spencer.

During the interview, the siblings discussed their relationship with their aunt and the person they remembered her to be.

Eliza told Tatler that Diana was "incredibly warm, maternal, and loving. She always made an effort to connect with us as children and had a talent for reading children's hearts."

Eliza and Amelia were raised in South Africa, so they weren't aware of how famous their aunt was during their childhood.

Lady Kitty Spencer
Lady Amelia and Lady Eliza Spencer. Getty

"We always just knew her as our aunt," Eliza told Tatler of her view of her Princess Diana. "Growing up in South Africa, I really had very little idea of how significant she was in the world until I was much older."

However, their distance from Diana's day-to-day life didn't stop the twins from catching glimpses of her fame. During the interview, Eliza told Tatler about an occasion in which a photographer approached the family during a trip to Noordhoek Beach.

"Obviously it could have been quite terrifying for us, being so young and not understanding what was happening," Eliza said to Tatler. "But she turned it into a game of who could get back to the car first. It was amazing how she protected us in a way that made us feel safe and not frightened."

"We had no idea what she was doing at the time," Eliza added.

Eliza and Amelia were 5 years old when the princess passed away, so they said they didn't understand the magnitude of her loss for the world until they were older.

Read more: 10 times Princess Diana showed she was an amazing mother

prince harry princess diana
Prince Harry with Princess Diana in 1987. AP/John Redman

"As a child, I realized the enormity of the loss for my father and family," Eliza told Tatler. "It was only later that I came to understand the significance of the loss of her as a figure in the world."

Amelia is currently engaged to her longtime partner, Greg Mallett. According to the Tatler interview, Charles Spencer suggested the couple tie the knot at Althorp, Princess Diana's childhood home.

"It's our family home, it's beautiful," Amelia told Tatler of the idea. "We would be very lucky to get married there."

"But Cape Town is where we grew up," she continued. "There is a possibility that we might do it here, too."

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