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BBC Pays Damages to Former Royal Nanny

Facts

  • Former royal nanny Alexandra Pettifer, previously known as Tiggy Legge-Bourke, has received a formal apology and is due to collect substantial damages from the BBC for unfounded allegations that she engaged in an affair with Prince Charles and had an abortion after becoming pregnant with his illegitimate child.
  • BBC director general Tim Davie has also issued a public apology to Princes William and Harry - whom Pettifer nannied - and Prince Charles over an infamous 1995 interview with Princess Diana that was obtained via "deceitful behavior".
  • Claims that Pettifer was engaged in an affair with her royal employer were part of a portfolio of falsifications used by former BBC journalist Martin Bashir to gain Princess Diana's trust and secure the interview. Other efforts included bank statements falsified to suggest that Diana's close associates were selling stories to the tabloids.

Sources

Spin

Establishment-critical narrative

This settlement has done very little to resolve the damage done to an innocent and loyal employee and not to mention the royal family. Those responsible at the BBC have escaped largely unscathed and the investigation into and damages awarded as a result of the actions taken by Bashir have cost TV license payers up to £3M. This was blatant defamation and a dog whistle for misogyny.

Pro-establishment narrative

According to the Dyson inquiry, Bashir lied to several people at the BBC over the incident. Although his conduct fell far short of the high standards of integrity and transparency expected of BBC journalists, damages have now been awarded and Bashir no longer works for the corporation. BBC has done all it can to resolve the issue.