Princess Diana's Butler Recalls Time Martin Bashir Made Her "Burst Into Tears"
Princess Diana's former butler is alleging that the princess was once brought to tears when she listened in on a call from Martin Bashir in 1996. The butler, Paul Burrell, says Bashir would contact him for details on Diana's whereabouts and men she may be seeing, and the princess was "shocked" and "distraught" when she heard how Bashir spoke about her on the phone.
Princess Diana's butler claims one 1996 phone call from Martin Bashir made the princess "burst into tears" and left her feeling "betrayed."
Today, former royal butler Paul Burrell told The Sun that after the 1995 BBC interview, Bashir would phone him seeking information about Diana. She listened in on one of these calls and was "hurt" by what she heard, Burrell said.
Princess Diana in tears over Martin Bashir phone call
Burrell told The Sun that he never gave Bashir information, but the journalist would pry for details about Diana's whereabouts and "her boyfriends" in the months after their BBC interview aired.
On one occasion, Diana listened in on a call and Bashir was "being very disrespectful," Burrell said. She overheard him describing her as "flighty," the butler recalled, as Bashir speculated about why the princess wasn't taking his calls.
"It was a very uncomfortable moment," Burrell added. "Diana was looking at me like, 'Oh my God, is this how he speaks to you about me?' She was seeing a different side to him and she was shocked, absolutely gobsmacked by his irreverence."
He continued, "Whenever [Bashir] addressed her in person he was always very polite and would call her Your Royal Highness. This was, to her, like listening to a different person."
Burrell then described Diana's reaction to the call like this: "After I put the phone down, she looked distraught and she said to me, 'How could he be like that?'"
He added, "Then she burst into tears and ran out of the room. She was really hurt and she did feel betrayed by him."
Princess Diana felt "betrayed" by Martin Bashir, butler says
Burrell felt this call was the moment that Diana and Bashir's connection went downhill. She felt betrayed because she'd given him "a career-making" interview, but she then realized he was exploiting her, Burrell claimed.
The butler's story comes as Bashir's 1995 interview of Princess Diana has been in the spotlight this month, following an investigation into the sit-down talk with the royal.
Prince William, Prince Harry, and Charles Spencer all condemned the BBC and Bashir for their parts in the controversial interview, which they connect to the events leading to Diana's death in 1997.
The investigation ultimately found Bashir was "deceitful and dishonest" in how he secured the interview. He did apologize to the family and for forging receipts to initially get in touch with Princess Diana, but he feels it is "unfair" to blame him for her death.