Letter: The Queen and duty

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The Independent Online
REGARDING Alexander Chancellor's perspicacious article ("Now the Queen is too matey", 27 September), the frenzy of mourning over Diana produced much irrational criticism of the Queen, who had carefully included her daughter-in-law in the Royal Family after her divorce and allowed her extensive grace-and-favour apartments in Kensington Palace.

Yet the Queen, supreme governor of the Church of England, was criticised for taking her family to a Sunday religious service immediately after the tragedy, while outcry at an empty flagstaff over Buckingham Palace showed an obsession with trivial etiquette often blamed on the Court.

The Queen always carried out far more public duties and acted as patron for very many more charities than the late Princess, whose genius for "modernity" was chiefly shown in making the most of photo opportunities: after all, royal men gave up wearing gloves to shake hands long before she was born.


London, SW15