Royals criticize BBC for ‘exaggerated and baseless claims’ in new documentary

A new BBC documentary directed by presenter Amol Rajan has been criticized by the royals (Picture: Getty/BBC)

A rare joint statement has been issued by the three main royal households criticizing the BBC for broadcasting ‘exaggerated and baseless claims’ in a documentary.

Buckingham Palace, Clarence House and Kensington Palace have said it is “disappointing” that the broadcaster has given “credibility” to such claims.

The first episode of the two-part program The Princes And The Press, presented by Amol Rajan, was broadcast on Monday evening.

It contained suggestions that royal sources had informed journalists behind the scenes, including possibly leaking negative stories about other households.

But it stopped repeating accusations William’s aides took against his brother Harry in the wake of the younger prince’s decision to leave the royal family.

The controversial documentary – which examines the Duke of Cambridge and the Duke of Sussex’s relationship with the media – had already banned the royals before it aired, mainly because they didn’t get a chance to see it before the rest of the nation had seen it.

In a statement to the BBC, shown at the end of the programme, the three households said: ‘A free, responsible and open press is vital to a healthy democracy.

“All too often it is exaggerated and baseless claims from unnamed sources that are presented as facts and it is disappointing when anyone, including the BBC, gives them credibility.”

It is rare for the three main households of the royal family to issue a joint statement (Picture: Getty Images)
Prince Harry and then girlfriend Chelsy Davy – a private investigator said he was paid to observe her (Picture: Getty Images Europe)

The program explored the media’s treatment of William and Harry since childhood.

It featured a interview with a private detective, Gavin Burrows, who claimed he was deployed to guard Harry’s girlfriend Chelsy Davy in the early 2000s.

During the program, a lawyer for Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, also responded to reports in 2018 about Meghan’s alleged treatment of palace staff.

In March, The Times reported that the Duchess allegedly expelled two personal assistants and “humiliated” staff on several occasions, which she denies.

Meghan’s lawyer Jenny Afia said the claims she was too difficult as a boss were ‘false’ (Picture: BBC)

Buckingham Palace has since launched an investigation and the royal household has commissioned an outside legal team to help the staff team investigate allegations against the former Suits star.

Jenny Afia, of the Schillings law firm, told Rajan on the program: “Those stories weren’t true. This story that no one can work for the Duchess of Sussex, she was too difficult and demanding as a boss and everyone had to leave, it’s just not true.”

After the program aired, a report published in The Sun claimed William forbade aides from informing relatives.

According to the paper, the Duke was “clear” he did not want assistants to say anything about the other households after seeing reports of his parents’ split.

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