On The Crown episode six, episode three, Elizabeth Debicki’s Princess Diana and Khalid Abdalla’s Dodi Fayed sympathize with the onslaught of media attention they’ve received since their relationship became public. “They pretend they’re your friend, and they write insult after insult,” Diana said of the press. “It makes me want to get away. Start again. Move to another country, somewhere like…”
The Crown is a piece of historical fiction, borrowing most of its plot points from real-life events and dramatizing them. But in the case of Princess Diana, did she Granted want to leave the UK, his family, his sons, and his people?
Princess Diana really had a desire to live abroad. “There is no doubt that he was looking for a new direction in his life at this time,” his brother, Charles Spencer, said in his eulogy at his funeral. “He talked endlessly about getting away from England, especially because of the treatment he received at the hands of the newspapers.”
At the Metropolitan Police’s official inquest into Princess Diana’s death, her sister, Lady Sarah McCorquodale, echoed the same sentiments as the investigators. “Diana talks about living in America or France, but these are only options. She saw our brother Charles, who escaped abroad from the paparazzi, and it attracted him,” he said. (At one time, Earl Spencer and his family live in Cape Town.)
The United States, in particular, seems to appeal to the Princess because she enjoys huge popularity there while also being an ocean away from the British tabloids. However, these plans never came to fruition.
They did, however, for another royal: his son, Prince Harry.
Like his mother, Prince Harry wants to move from England with his wife, Meghan Markle, to escape the attention of the press. “What if we could spend at least part of each year somewhere far away, still working for the Queen but out of reach of the press?” Harry wrote this in his autobiography.
Initially, it was a toss-up between New Zealand and South Africa for the couple, as they are both Commonwealth countries that maintain close ties with the UK. However, after they officially left the royal family, they settled in the very country that their mother also thought of: America. “We found a place. Priced at a deep discount. Right on the beach, outside of Santa Barbara. Lots of room, big gardens, a climbing frame—even a pond with koi carp,” he said. They bought the house in the summer of 2020 and have lived there ever since.