Princess Diana's Brother Charles Spencer Reveals Where He Finds an 'Oasis of Calm' Ahead of Her 60th Birthday

Princess Diana's brother speaks out on her milestone birthday and discusses the latest news about her scandalous 1995 BBC Panorama interview, saying, "I hope she'd be pleased the truth is out"

charles spencer, princess diana
Charles Spencer and Princess Diana. Photo: Amanda Edwards/WireImage; Tim Graham Photo Library/Getty

Princess Diana's brother is talking about the peaceful place she was laid to rest.

The grave site — on an island in the heart of a small lake at the family estate, Althorp — is an "oasis of calm," Charles, the 9th Earl Spencer said early on Tuesday.

Diana's younger brother said he visits the grave, sometimes with his family, frequently throughout the year. "Every landmark day, such as birthday, Mother's Day, I always take flowers," he told Good Morning Britain. "I do go a lot, and it's an oasis of calm, and it's a lovely place to go."

On July 1, which would have been her 60th birthday, a much anticipated statue will be unveiled by Prince William and Prince Harry as the U.K. and the world celebrate the princess, who died nearly 24 years ago.

"I remember my father always used to talk about the day Diana was born, 1st July 1961, and it was a sweltering hot day and this wonderful daughter appeared. It's so funny to be of an age now where your slightly older sister's 60. It will be an emotional day, but it will be a tribute to a much missed and much loved sister, mother, etc."

Can't get enough of PEOPLE's Royals coverage? Sign up for our free Royals newsletter to get the latest updates on Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle and more!

Spencer was a vociferous proponent of an inquiry into the circumstances that led to Diana giving an interview to the BBC's Panorama program in 1995. The probe by a leading judge Lord Dyson found reporter Martin Bashir had used fake documents to convince Spencer into introducing him to the princess.

For Charles Spencer, 57, it was important to inform the world of the truth behind the interview. He told GMB on Tuesday, "I hope she'd be pleased the truth is out to the context. She was taken into a very dark place, her paranoia was fed."

Diana, Princess of Wales, during her interview with Martin Bashir for the BBC
Princess Diana during her Panorama interview. PA Images

Former BBC director general Lord Tony Hall spoke before a Parliamentary committee on Tuesday, saying he is "sorry for the hurt caused" to the royal family by the scandal surrounding the interview by Bashir, who will not face criminal charges.

"I trusted a journalist. I gave him a second chance," said Lord Hall of the network's decision to keep Bashir, now 58, on as a reporter despite their initial awareness of ethically questionable tactics. "We, the team, gave him a second chance, and that trust was abused and was misplaced."

In the wake of the report in May, Prince William, 39, strongly criticized the "deceitful way the interview was obtained," saying, "It brings indescribable sadness to know that the BBC's failures contributed significantly to her fear, paranoia and isolation that I remember from those final years with her."

Prince Harry, 36, added, That is the first step towards justice and truth. Yet what deeply concerns me is that practices like these — and even worse — are still widespread today. Then, and now, it's bigger than one outlet, one network, or one publication.

"Our mother lost her life because of this, and nothing has changed. By protecting her legacy, we protect everyone, and uphold the dignity with which she lived her life. Let's remember who she was and what she stood for."

Related Articles