BBC bosses to pay damages to ex-royal nanny over 'deceitful' interview with Princess Diana

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BBC executives are to pay damages to an ex-royal nanny over the "deceitful tactics" used to obtain an interview with Diana, Princess of Wales in 1995.

Martin Bashir garnered international acclaim for his candid chat with the royal for the BBC's Panorama programme, but following an investigation led by Lord Dyson in 2020, it was determined that the journalist used forgery and deception to set up the interview.

On Thursday, BBC Director-General Tim Davie announced that Tiggy Legge-Bourke, the former nanny of Prince William and Prince Harry, would receive damages over the false claim in the interview that she was having an affair with their father, Prince Charles. He also issued a public apology to Legge-Bourke and the royal family.

"Following publication of the Dyson Report last year we have been working with those who suffered as a result of the deceitful tactics used by the BBC in pursuit of its interview with Diana, Princess of Wales for the Panorama programme in 1995, including the matters that were mentioned in court today in respect of Miss Tiggy Legge-Bourke, now Mrs Alexandra Pettifer," Davie said in a statement. "The BBC has agreed to pay substantial damages to Mrs Pettifer and I would like to take this opportunity to apologise publicly to her, to The Prince of Wales, and to the Dukes of Cambridge and Sussex, for the way in which Princess Diana was deceived and the subsequent impact on all their lives."

Legge-Bourke also served as a personal assistant to Charles from 1993 until 1999. The figure to be paid out was not disclosed.

"It is a matter of great regret that the BBC did not get to the facts in the immediate aftermath of the programme when there were warning signs that the interview might have been obtained improperly. Instead, as The Duke of Cambridge himself put it, the BBC failed to ask the tough questions. Had we done our job properly Princess Diana would have known the truth during her lifetime. We let her, The Royal Family and our audiences down," he added.

The episode of Panorama will never be broadcast on the BBC or elsewhere again.

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