That’s a wrap: How the UK's newspapers covered the royal christening
The biggest story of the day or a minor family event?
Yesterday, a baby was christened. Today, the UK’s newspapers were splashed with coverage of “Gorgeous George”, the little prince whose every move and facial expression will be scrutinised for the rest of his life.
For The Times, one front page wasn’t enough to show the little baby with its delighted parents, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. They provided readers with a “souvenir edition” wrap covering both front and back of the paper, and filled much of the actual page 1 inside with a close-up of George doing a “royal wave”, apparently.
The Daily Telegraph also went with that traditional adage of a picture painting a thousand words – so put just three on their extensive front page: “The perfect prince”. The bonanza of quite spectacularly similar-looking pictures continued through onto page 2 – and 3 – and 4 – and 5. There’s finally some (other) news on page 6, as David Cameron pledges to cut green taxes.
The Daily Mail joined The Times in describing itself as a “souvenir” of the happy day, though oddly happiness was not the emotion they read from the picture of George splashed across the front – “HRH Grumps” was their moniker for him.
That was followed by another 15 pages of “glorious” pictures inside, making the Telegraph look positively restrained.
The Sun’s front page read simply “Georgeous”, accompanying a close-up of the prince with a suggestion that he is dressed in “gold”. That jars slightly with Metro, which said in its first three pages of coverage that seemingly all the royals wore cream, except the Queen herself who “didn’t get the memo”.
The Daily Express urged a certain degree of deference upon its readers, with a front page showing the baby in his father’s arms and saying: “Meet Prince George, your future king”. It then slightly bizarrely listed George’s age and date of birth – it feels like it was only yesterday.
The Daily Mirror led with an exclusive revealing that Portuguese police have restarted the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. The paper has been among those at the forefront of efforts to keep her search in the public eye – but it still had space for a thin picture down the left of its front page showing royal mother and baby. It nonetheless had four pages of coverage inside, reserving the full details of the McCann story to page 9.
The Guardian also led with a prominent picture of a woman holding something precious – but it was Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, holding a mobile phone representative of her privacy. She has been forced to call President Barack Obama to ask if the US has been bugging her calls.
The paper nonetheless sacrificed page 3 to the story, featuring a picture of the prince along with details of his seven godparents.
Meanwhile, The Independent led with the news that Royal Marines allegedly “murdered a Taliban fighter live on camera”. Somewhere deep on page 27 a story read, in full: “Prince George was christened yesterday in a private ceremony at St James’s Palace led by the Archbishop of Canterbury.” It is not accompanied by a picture.
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