Former Attitude magazine editor reveals how Princess Diana‘s work with AIDS patients inspired him to invite Prince William to grace the cover – and says the late royal would approve

The former editor of Attitude magazine has revealed he was inspired by ‘s work with AIDs patients to invite to become the first royal to grace the cover an LGBT magazine. 

Matthew Todd, from , appeared on Lorraine this morning to discuss the impact the royals have on gay culture. 

He told the presenter that he‘d been inspired by the late Princess‘ work with AIDs patients to invite Prince William to grace the cover of the magazine.

Matthew suggested she would be proud of William for the cover, saying: ‘I can imagine, when he did that, somewhere she would be saying thumbs up.‘ 

Scroll down for video 

Prince William appeared on the cover of Attitude magazine in 2016, marking the first time a member of the Royal Family had been photographed for the cover of a gay publication. 

Matthew, the former editor of Attitude, appeared on Lorraine to reveal that it was Princess Diana‘s work with the LGBT community that had inspired him to invite the Duke.  

He explained that Princess Diana had been transformative in his experience as a gay man, saying: ‘It was very difficult growing up. It affected my self-esteem, I felt very depressed about just being a gay person because there was nobody saying it was OK.‘

He went on to call the moment Princess Diana shook hands with a man suffering from the AIDs ‘life changing.‘

In April 1987, Princess Diana opened the UK‘s first purpose built HIV/AIDS unit that exclusively cared for patients infected with the virus, at London Middlesex Hospital.

She was photographed shaking hands a man suffering with the illness without wearing gloves, publicly challenging the notion that HIV/AIDS was passed from person to person by touch.

Receive News & Ratings Via Email - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings with's FREE daily email newsletter.

Matthew told Lorraine: ‘For Princess Diana to shake hands with someone HIV positive was life-changing. It went all across the world.‘

Recalling what an inspiration she had been to the gay community, he went on: ‘It‘s so sad we lost her and we never really got a chance to thank her.‘

Matthew also revealed that her work for the LGBT community had inspired him to ask her son Prince William to grace the cover of Attitude magazine in 2016. 

He revealed that Prince William joked ‘don‘t ask me to take my shirt off‘, before calling the royal ‘amazing‘ and ‘absolutely lovely.‘ 

He went on: ‘That was the main reason, I asked him. Diana had meant so much for me as a teenager.‘ 

He also suggested that the move from the Duke of Cambridge, who was the first royal to grace the cover of an LGBT magazine, would have made his mother proud.  

The former editor told Lorraine: ‘I can imagine, when he did that, somewhere she would be saying thumbs up.‘ 

In an interview to go with the cover shoot, Prince William hit out at bullies who targeted the gay community, saying: ‘No one should be bullied for their sexuality.‘ 

He then called on young people being bullied for their sexuality to seek help. 

Attitude was founded in 1994 and is the UK‘s biggest-selling gay magazine with a circulation of around 60,000 issues per month, including digital. 

Matthew – who was editor of Attitude magazine from 2008-2016 – went on to say that if Diana was alive she would have a huge presence in LGBT media. 

Matthew explained: ‘If she was here she‘d be on the cover of Attitude. She‘d be in all the gay clubs, she‘d be doing all the gay magazines. She‘d have a cabaret act by now.‘