King Charles III London Underground theatre poster pixelated amid fears it might cause offence

Transport for London said the decision to blur Prince Charles' face had been made by their advertising contractor

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The Independent Culture

“The Queen is dead: after a lifetime of waiting, the prince ascends the throne. A future of power. But how to rule?”

A controversial new play by Mike Bartlett is currently running at London’s Almeida Theatre – but a poster advertising King Charles III has been censored on the London Underground in an apparent bid to avoid causing offence.

The advertisement shows Prince Charles attired for his coronation in a crown and fur mantle with his mouth covered by a criss-cross of white duct tape.

But, despite the fact that the poster has been on public display since the play’s opening on 3 April, those lining the halls of the underground show Charles’ face pixelated.

However, on Sunday it remained unclear why the posters had been modified.


A Transport for London (TfL) spokesperson said : “The decision was made by our advertising contractor without reference to us and does look to have been a little over enthusiastic. We will speak to them about it.”

Tom Moloney, of the NB Studio which designed the poster, told the Daily Mail that he had been surprised by the decision.

“We weren’t aware until we sent the artwork. We sent it off  and it was sent back,” he said.

“All we know is we had to change it in line with their feedback. It was to do with TfL’s rules and regulations about what you are allowed to put up on their sites.”

A Clarence House aide told the newspaper that no attempt had been made to contact Charles about his image being used, nor had the Prince instructed anyone to censor the advert.

King Charles III runs until 31 May. Directed by Rupert Goold, it has received glowing reviews, although critics have noted that it is contentious. Charles is played by  Tim Pigott-Smith.