Lady Colin Campbell
Georgia Arianna Ziadie
17 August 1949
St Andrew, Jamaica
|Residence||Kennington, London, England|
|Other names||Georgia Arianna Ziadie|
|Occupation||Author, socialite, radio hostess|
Lord Colin Campbell
(m. 1974; div. 1975)
Lady Colin Campbell (born Georgia Arianna Ziadie; 17 August 1949) is a Jamaican-born British writer, socialite and television and radio personality who has published three books about the British royal family. They include biographies of Diana, Princess of Wales, which was on The New York Times bestseller list in 1992 and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother.
Georgia Arianna Ziadie was born in Jamaica in 1949, one of four children of department store owner Gloria Dey (née Smedmore) and Michael George Ziadie. At birth, she had a genital malformation (a fused labia and deformed clitoris). Medical advice at the time was to assign her as a male so that she could live what was deemed as a normal life. She was christened George William. Though her family life was otherwise happy, Campbell has since spoken and written of the many personal issues she faced being raised as a boy when she was physically female.
Her family, the Ziadies, were prominent in Jamaica, having grown wealthy from trade. Campbell moved from Jamaica to New York City to attend the Fashion Institute of Technology. She was not able to have corrective genital surgery until 1970 when she was 21, when her grandmother discovered what had occurred and gave her the $5,000 she needed. At that time, Ziadie legally changed her name to Georgia Arianna and received a new birth certificate.
"No one ever faced the knife more eagerly than I. You would have thought I was going on a wonderful cruise - which, in a way, I suppose I was," Campbell wrote in her autobiography. She had already started working as a model in New York City prior to her surgery.
On 23 March 1974, after having known him for only five days, she married Lord Colin Ivar Campbell, the younger son of the eleventh Duke of Argyll. She has said of him, "He had the strongest personality of anyone I had ever met - he simply exuded strength, decisiveness and charm." However their relationship quickly soured. The couple split after nine months over the scandal surrounding her birth certificate. The couple divorced after 14 months. She successfully sued several publications that claimed she was born a boy and had subsequently undergone a sex change, and accused her former husband of selling the untrue story for money.
In 1993, she adopted two Russian boys, Misha and Dima.
Campbell is best known for her books on Diana, Princess of Wales, and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. Her 1992 book, Diana in Private: The Princess Nobody Knows, provided information about Diana's struggle with bulimia and her affair with James Hewitt. Campbell was dismissed as a fantasist, but some of her claims were later vindicated.Diana in Private appeared on the New York Times Best Seller list in 1992.
Some of her books have been criticised for unverified statements. In The Queen Mother, The Untold story of Elizabeth Bowes Lyon (2012), Campbell claimed that Elizabeth and her brother were born to the family's French cook, who was used as a surrogate mother.
She appeared in Comedy Nation, a British tv show. In November 2015, Campbell took part in the fifteenth TV series of I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here!. The following month, she left the programme before its conclusion "on medical grounds". In a later interview, Campbell said that she felt bullied into leaving the show by Tony Hadley and Duncan Bannatyne.
In 2016, she featured in a documentary entitled Lady C and the Castle, which was broadcast by ITV. The programme charted her journey in converting her dilapidated castle into a wedding venue. In 2017 she appeared at the castle in an episode of Salvage Hunters on Quest. She also appeared on Through the Keyhole, where Keith Lemon toured Castle Goring. In August 2019 Lady C appeared on Celebs Go Dating, shown on E4.