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Parents' & Friends' Zone
OBs & Foundation
Penny Junor at BGS
Penny Junor at BGS
22.05.2012 - David Selwyn reports
My only encounter with Prince William occurred some years ago one Sunday morning in London, when I was on my way to church; he emerged from St James’s Palace and smiled so pleasantly that I said ‘Good morning, sir’. The friend who was with me, a massive snob if ever there was one, didn’t realise who it was, and could have kicked himself afterwards when I told him; perhaps it was the sheer naturalness of the young Prince’s manner that deflected any thoughts that this might have been a royal.
Certainly naturalness and charm were dominating characteristics to emerge from Penny Junor’s description of Prince William when introducing her new biography of him at a recent literary evening. Having written on both his parents, about whom she spoke very sympathetically, she has now produced a book which inevitably includes almost as much about Prince Harry (‘utterly delightful, and not quite as wild and wicked as you think’) as about his brother; they are clearly very close, and one of her most telling insights concerned the nature of the relationship they will maintain when William comes to be king – each of them highly supportive of the other.
But she was full of insights, not least into the relation between the Royal Family and the media. As a journalist herself, she has no illusions about the treatment to which they are habitually subjected in the interest of selling papers – nor to the difference that a snide headline can make to a perfectly innocent article; and she had some crisp things to say about the BBC.
The enjoyment of the evening as a whole – and Lucy Shepherd really knows how to do these things – was greatly enhanced by wine and delicious canapés, by the hospitable attentions of the young helpers and by the BGS Ukulele Band, which serenaded us gently on our arrival while we admired a splendid picture of William painted specially for the occasion by Year 11 pupils Carmen and Sarah (with a little help from their friends).
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