Brother of Diana, Princess of Wales, shares unseen portrait of their mother

Frances Shand-Kydd

A previously-unseen portrait of Frances Shand-Kydd, which as been posted on social media by her son Earl Spencer - Credit: Earl Spencer

A previously-unseen family portrait has been shared of the Norfolk-born mother of the late Diana, Princess of Wales.

Her younger brother, Earl Spencer, posted the image of Frances Shand-Kydd on Instagram.

"My mother – on this, her 85th birthday," he wrote. "She was born in Sandringham, Norfolk, on the very same day that King George V died – in the same parish. She died three days after the 50th anniversary of her marriage to my father. This portrait is to be found in the library at Althorp House."

Princess Diana with her mother, 26th March 1963. Photo: PA

Princess Diana, then aged two, with her mother in1963 - Credit: PA

Many commented on the resemblance between Frances and her daughter. Both were born at Park House, on the Sandringham Estate. Frances came into the world on January 20, 1936 - the day on which King George V left it.

Diana  - Frances's fourth child after she married Viscount Althorp - arrived on July 1, 1961 and spent her early years in Norfolk. 

The Leonard Cheshire Foundation Park House Hotel at Sandringham.

Both Princess Diana and her mother, Frances Shand-Kydd, were born at Park House on the Sandringham Estate in Norfolk - Credit: Archant

One follower said of the portrait: "I can see where Diana got her stunning looks from."

Another added: "Beautiful - just like DIana."

Princess Diana aged 6 with her brother Charles. Photo: PA

Princess Diana, aged six, with her brother Charles, now Earl Spencer - Credit: PA

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While Diana was just five and two years after her younger brother Charles, now 56 was born, her mother met Peter Shand-Kydd an Australian heir to a wallpaper fortune. She left her husband for him in 1967 and the couple married in 1969.

In 1976, the viscount married Raine, Countess of Dartmouth - the daughter of the novelist Dame Barbara Cartland - and the couple lived at Park House, with their four children.


Diana with her pet guinea pig, in1972 - Credit: John Hocknell

The Shand-Kydds divided their time between London, a sheep farm in New South Wales and the island of Seil, off west Scotland, before they separated in 1988.

Frances passed away on the island on June 3, 2004, at the age of 68. Grand sons Prince William and Harry attended her funeral, with William giving a reading.

During her later years, she was said to have had a rocky relationship with her daughter and the two were not on speaking terms when Diana died after she was involved in a car crash in Paris on August 31, 1997.


Princess Diana at Sandringham on Christmas Day, 1994 - Credit: Archant