Diana and Charles’ wedding was considered a fairytale occasion for most royal fans and many expected them to one day sit side-by-side on the throne together. Yet their relationship deteriorated quickly, due to their 13-year age difference and the regular conflicts which drove the couple apart. Many members of the public are aware of Charles’ on-off relationship with his old flame Camilla Parker Bowles, which started again in 1986 five years after his wedding.
However, Diana had affairs too with individuals such as cavalry officer James Hewitt.
As a result, Charles decided it was best for both of them to be able to have other relationships so that they could maintain their marriage, according to a biography of the future King.
Biographer Howard Hodgson claimed: “She could have Hewitt and whomever else she wanted, provided there was discretion and neither the Crown nor the children were embarrassed or hurt and he [Charles] could have Camilla.”
Writing in his 2007 book, ‘Charles — The Man who will be King’, Mr Hodgson explained Charles thought this was the “best either of them could hope for” given the “desperate state” of their marriage.
He added: “Slowly Diana came to understand that she had finally really burned her bridges with Charles, and even though there were days when she would tell friends that she hated him, the thought of him rejecting her made her want him back.
“The one man whom she had always wanted to possess had finally turned his back on her, given up trying to make his marriage work and no one could help her get him back again.”
The couple did continue to carry out joint royal engagements and Mr Hodgson said a “civilised if uneasy peace” was reached between them.
Mr Hodgson also claimed Charles resumed his relationship with Camilla in part because of the troubles he faced behind closed doors with Diana.
READ MORE: How Charles fell into ‘deepest depression of his life’ before Camilla
In it, she provided astonishing emotional insight into the Royal Family and her relationship with Charles.
She famously mentioned that there were “always three of us in this marriage”, referring to Charles’ long-term affair with Camilla.
Even so, Diana expressed her regret at how relations with Charles had fallen apart.
Talking to the BBC’s Martin Bashir, she said: “I think like any marriage, specially when you’ve had divorced parents like myself, you’d want to try even harder to make it work and you don’t want to fall back into a pattern that you’ve seen happen in your own family.
“I desperately wanted it to work, I desperately loved my husband and I wanted to share everything together.”
She added: “I don’t want a divorce, but obviously we need clarity on a situation that has been of enormous discussion over the last three years in particular.”
However the interview itself was reportedly a catalyst towards the official break down of their marriage.
Charles went on to marry Camilla in 2005, a decade after his divorce and nine years after Diana’s death.