ITV to host Duchess of Cambridge’s Christmas carol service after royals BBC row

BBC is at the centre of a row over the recent documentary ‘The Princes and the Press’

Louis Chilton
Tuesday 30 November 2021 12:52
Royal Christmas service

ITV has confirmed it will broadcast a Christmas carol service led by the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton.

The service, which is scheduled to take place at Westminster Abbey, was originally intended to air on the BBC, but the broadcaster has been snubbed due to a row over a documentary about the royals’ relationship with the media.

The recent BBC Two documentary The Princes and the Press prompted criticism from the royal family for focusing on “overblown and unfounded claims”.

According to ITV, the carol service will celebrate the “individuals and organisations across the nation who have stepped up to support their communities through the pandemic”.

The service, hosted by Kate Middleton and the Royal Foundation, will air on 8 December. It was developed via a partnership with Westminster Abbey and BBC Studios Events Productions.

Guests will include grassroots community organisers, charity workers, volunteers, teachers and emergency responders.

Carols will be performed by the Westminster Abbey choir, and the day will also feature readings and guest musicians.

One of the main points of controversy in The Princes And The Press documentary was the suggestion that courtiers had leaked negative stories about the Duchess of Sussex.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, photographed on 13 November 2021

It was also suggested that there was a rivalry between the households.

In a rare joint statement, Buckingham Palace, Clarence House and Kensington Palace issued a statement to the BBC, which was featured at the end of the documentary.

It read: “A free, responsible and open press is of vital importance to a healthy democracy.

“However, too often it is overblown and unfounded claims from unnamed sources that are presented as facts and it is disappointing when anyone, including the BBC, gives them credibility.”

It is available to watch now on BBC iPlayer.

Additional reporting by PA

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in