How Princess Diana’s unique parenting style involved secret trips to glitzy events, expert says

Prince William was on hosting duties at the Earthshot prize-giving event over the weekend, celebrating environmental innovators at a glittering ceremony at London’s Alexandra Palace.

Dozens of celebrities attended the event and royal expert Duncan Larcombe says William would have likely grabbed a sneaky selfie with Emma Watson for huge Harry Potter fans George and Charlotte.

But our future King is no stranger to the glitz and glamour of red carpet events.

"Princess Diana used to take William and Harry to concerts and other events," Duncan exclusively tells OK!. "I remember her taking them to a Take That concert and they went backstage.

"Diana wasn’t averse to allowing William and Harry to occasionally enjoy the fact that they’re royal and can meet whoever they want.

"But they tended to be in a private capacity. If she went to a concert, it was usually as a mum with her kids rather than as Princess Diana."

When it came to parenting, Diana regularly broke from tradition. The princess chose to take William with her on her first overseas tour in 1983 when he was nine months old, despite the Queen leaving a young Prince Charles in the care of nannies when she went on royal visits.

William and Harry also did not have any homeschooling as many royals before them had.

Aside from taking the boys along to formal engagements, Diana also made the boys do plenty of “normal” activities outside of their royal appearances. They were once pictured leaving Kensington having watched Disney’s Jungle Book.

They also visited Thorpe Park, with a number of photographs from a trip in 1993 showing Diana laughing while aboard some of the rides.

Whether William and Kate will choose to parent like Diana remains to be seen, but Duncan says he doesn't think George, Charlotte or Louis will be taken to official events – even if they're really keen to go.

Instead, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge keep them included in other ways.

"I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Prince George and Prince Charlotte asked their dad to grab a selfie with Emma Watson, who played Hermione in the Harry Potter films,” he says.

"He may even have sent the children a photo on the night.

"We know that George and Charlotte in particular clearly keep a close eye on what mum and dad do. There was a lovely moment last month when William had a great big python round his neck at an engagement at a zoo. He was stroking it and revealed that that a snake would be George’s dream pet.

"It shows that he and Kate send messages back to their children and it’s absolutely conceivable that George and Charlotte may have some Harry Potter stuff that they wanted Emma Watson to sign. That would be a bit of fun."

Duncan says George’s appearance at Wembley for the Euros 2020 football was a "one-off".

"He melted hearts cheering on the England team and celebrating goals with his mum and dad," Duncan says.

"But that was an official appearance for William as president of the FA and I don’t think William would be comfortable taking George or Charlotte along on official engagements.

"But William will have fond memories of his childhood and he’ll no doubt want his children to enjoy similar opportunities.

"If George and Charlotte are Harry Potter fans, what better opportunity than their dad getting a picture with Hermione Granger!"

Royal expert Duncan Larcombe is the author of Prince Harry: The Inside Story.

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