Princess Diana’s brother reveals he paid sex worker £15 to lose his virginity on family holiday aged 12

Princess Diana’s brother has revealed that he paid a sex worker £15 to lose his virginity while on a family holiday to Italy at the age of 12.

Earl Charles Spencer recalls the incident in his forthcoming memoir, A Very Private School, and links it to sexual abuse he says he suffered while at boarding school in the 1970s.

The 59-year-old writes that he paid the woman with his pocket money while on a trip with his mother and stepfather, and said he did not sleep with another woman until he was 17 after it left him feeling “hollow and cold”.

Charles Spencer has written a forthcoming memoir (PA)
Charles Spencer has written a forthcoming memoir (PA)

According to a US version of the book, seen by The Sun ahead of its UK release next Thursday, the earl says he was abused while at boarding school, which he recalled as a time of “casual cruelty, sexual assault and other perversions”.

Describing his abuser as a “master of emotional manipulation”, he said: “This woman’s control over mesmerised boys was total, for we were starved of feminine warmth and desperate for her affection.

“The effect of what she did to me was profound and immediate, awaking in me basic desires that had no place in one so young.”

Earl Spencer writes that the abuse would often include kissing and touching, and said other boys were also victims.

The aristocrat has previously told TES magazine that he suffered six months of sleepless nights before he was sent to the institution at the age of eight, and said he had pleaded “to go to a state school because it must be preferable to 13-week blocks away in a rather cold and unpleasant place”.

Charles Spencer is uncle to Princes Harry and William (AFP via Getty Images)
Charles Spencer is uncle to Princes Harry and William (AFP via Getty Images)

Earl Spencer went on to study at Eton and Oxford University, where he reportedly declined an invitation to join the Bullingdon Club alongside ex-prime ministers David Cameron and Boris Johnson.

He later became an on-air correspondent with NBC News, where he worked for a decade as a journalist and broadcaster. He has also worked as a book reviewer and has authored history books, including Althorp: The Story of an English House, about the estate where he grew up, which he previously described as “nightmarish”.

The earl inherited his father’s titles at the age of 27, six years before his sister Diana – who married the now King Charles, and was mother to Princes Harry and William – was killed in a car crash in Paris.