The BBC was accused of giving credibility to ‘exaggerated and unfounded allegations’ about the royal family last night when it aired a controversial documentary about William and Harry.
In an extraordinary joint statement, Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace and Clarence House said it was ‘disappointing’ that the broadcaster had chosen to broadcast allegations of Harry and Meghan’s departure from the UK.
Lawyers for the royal family were on standby over the two-part BBC2 series, which included allegations that insiders from other royal households had briefed against the Sussexes.
Buckingham Palace has reportedly threatened a boycott of future projects with the BBC after court officials were not allowed to watch the program until the first episode aired last night.
In the heavily worded joint statement given to the BBC ahead of yesterday’s program, representatives of the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William said: ‘A free, responsible and open press is crucial to a healthy democracy.
But all too often, exaggerated and unfounded allegations from unnamed sources are presented as facts, and it is disappointing when someone, including the BBC, gives them credibility. ‘
In the heavily worded joint statement given to the BBC ahead of yesterday’s program, representatives of the Queen (pictured), Prince Charles and Prince William said: ‘A free, responsible and open press is crucial to a healthy democracy
The BBC was accused of giving credibility to ‘exaggerated and unfounded allegations’ about the royal family last night when it aired a controversial documentary about William and Harry (pictured in July 2018)
The episode featured Dan Wootton telling about his story that became known as ‘Tiaragate’. It also featured Jenny Afia, a lawyer from Schillings who works with the Duchess of Sussex
Last night’s first episode of The Princes and The Press detailed media coverage of the young royals from 2012 to 2018, where Harry and Meghan got engaged. It included allegations of ‘competitiveness’ between the various royal households.
Journalist Omid Scobie, co-author of the controversial biography of Sussex, Finding Freedom, said negative stories had been leaked about Meghan, even though he did not name those involved. ‘There were some people who felt her [Meghan] should be put in her place.
I think that by leaking a negative story, it is punishment, he said. “There have been rumors for a while that many of the most damaging and negative stories … have come from other royal households or from other royal helpers. Based on my own research and reporting, this is absolutely true.”
It is understood that the BBC provided a written note outlining relevant allegations but rejected requests to provide a preview of the two hour-long episodes.
Insiders said the rift between William and Harry will be investigated in even more detail in next week’s installment.
Royal advisers believe that the Queen, Charles and William have not been offered a proper right to answer.
They fear that the BBC’s decision to include them in a documentary, anchored by the self-proclaimed Republican Amol Rajan, will give their claims a level of legitimacy.
In an extraordinary joint statement, Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace and Clarence House said it was ‘disappointing’ that the broadcaster had chosen to broadcast allegations about Harry and Meghans (pictured with Prince William and Kate Middleton in March 2020) departing from the UK
Last night’s program included an interview with private detective Gavin Burrows, who admitted that he had attacked Harry’s ex-girlfriend Chelsy Davy.
He said she was subjected to voicemail hacking and surveillance after she started dating the prince in 2004, when Harry had become ‘the new Diana’ because of the level of tabloid interest in his life.
Burrows said he worked for the now defunct News of the World and other newspapers, telling the BBC: “There was a lot of voicemail hacking going on, there was a lot of surveillance work on her phones, on her communications.”
He apologized for his part in attacking Miss Davy, who is now married, and for the impact on Harry, saying: ‘I was basically part of a group of people who robbed him of his normal teenage years.’
He is now witnessing a lawsuit over alleged phone hacking that Prince Harry and others have filed against the publisher of News of the World, News Group Newspapers, which disputes his allegations.
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