The Queen faced ‘PR disaster’ as struggled with ’emotional response’ to national tragedy | Royal | News (Reports)

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The author continues: “‘As a mother, I’m trying to understand what your feelings must be,’ she said, tearing up.

“‘I’m sorry I can give you nothing at present except sympathy.’

“Responses to a tragedy of this size can’t be considered a matter of protocol or tradition or policy.

“They should be spontaneous – as demonstrated by Tony.”

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Mr Irving goes on: “But the Queen was unable to react spontaneously as he had. Something paralysed her.

“The phrase ‘I’m trying to understand what your feelings must be’ was stark in its self-confession and spoke to a rigidity in her emotions.

“She could not, at least, be accused of making a calculated public relations decision.

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“Later the palace said she feared her presence would have got in the way of the rescue effort. But, as her advisers knew, it was a PR disaster.”

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