Friday, 29 January 2010

Boris and Charlie and an official denial

Bit of a mysterious twist has overtaken the recent tale of our beloved Boris' alleged blithering ditherings with our bonnie Prince Charlie. 

On Wednesday 27th January, the London Evening Standard blasted Londoners with a front page story, banner headlined 'CHARLES' SECRET LETTERS TO BORIS'. The Stranded excitedly blared "sources at City Hall" had said Boris and Charles were in "regular written contact" and had met face-to-face "on several occasions". Tagged as an "exclusive", carrying City Hall Editor Pippa Crerar's byline, the story heavily implied Charlie had lobbied Boris over the controversial Chelsea Barracks housing project.

What a difference a day makes. Turn to page 2 inside yesterday's Stranded (Thursday 28th January) and a follow-up story, without tag and carrying nobody's byline, says Clarence House, Prince Charles' domain and his home where he apparently long awaits longing to be King, has "denied the correspondence" between Charles and Prince Boris was frequent and stressed they'd only had "one official meeting in the last two years". The article finishes by saying "the Mayor's office now agrees with the Palace's version of events". 
The Palace? I thought the Stranded said it was Clarence House's denial.

All of which begs a few questions. Are City Hall officials and the Mayor's office claiming that Boris and Charles are regular buddies? Why didn't Pippa and company at the Stranded include Clarence House's response in the original story? Is the Prince undermining the democratic process? Is Boris sucking up to Charles? Or is this all mere Stranded tittle tattle and should we all give a hoot?

Next up: What is the Mayor doing in Bloomsbury?

Paul Coleman, London, January 2010.

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