Clive Myrie ‘felt the weight of history on his shoulders’ reporting on King Charles III’s proclamation

BBC broadcaster covered first proclamation that has been filmed

Tara Cobham
Wednesday 04 October 2023 07:28 BST
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Clive Myrie said he “really felt the weight of history” on his shoulders as he recalled the momentous moment he reported on King Charles III’s proclamation
Clive Myrie said he “really felt the weight of history” on his shoulders as he recalled the momentous moment he reported on King Charles III’s proclamation (BBC News)

Clive Myrie said he “really felt the weight of history” on his shoulders as he recalled the moment he reported on King Charles III’s proclamation.

Speaking at Henley Literary Festival, of which The Independent is the exclusive news partner, he said it felt like “heavy duty stuff”, which was “interesting” considering there were “no bullets flying around”, he added, making reference to the numerous conflict zones he has reported from over his decades-long journalism career.

Asked what it was like to cover the event, the first time a monarch’s proclamation has been filmed, the BBC broadcaster said: “I really did feel the weight of history on my shoulders. I was telling the whole world.”

Clive Myrie also reminisced on other interactions with the King, remembering him as a “very approachable” person (Scarlet Page)

Mr Myrie also reminisced on other interactions with the King, remembering him as a “very approachable” person.

Referring to a roof he broadcast from in Ukraine amid the war, Mr Myrie told of a time at a BBC anniversary when Charles greeted him by saying: “You’re the man off the roof. It must get jolly cold up there.” Mr Myria said he responded, “Yes, I had my long johns on.”

Mr Myrie reminisced on other interactions with the King, remembering him as a “very approachable” person (PA Wire)

Mr Myrie added that a key challenge for the King during his reign will be “finding a role, not just for himself in the institution, but for the institution itself in a much more cynical world”.

The BBC broadcaster spoke of another interaction with a notable figure, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, remembering him as an “impressive man”, although one who is “absolutely knackered”.

Interviewing the Ukrainian president for the BBC, Mr Myrie said, “I felt really guilty taking up his time. He had the lives of 40 million people and their welfare on his shoulders. But he had to get his message out.”

During a conversation in which Mr Zelenskyy became emotional at times, Mr Myrie said: “But he was forthright that he was doing this for his people and that he wasn’t going to cede any land because of this naked aggression by Vladimir Putin.”

Mr Myrie himself spoke about the multiple occasions when the subject matter of his reporting has brought him to tears, such as the trauma of the Covid pandemic, or the overwhelming joy of Barack Obama’s election.

When asked about how he finds hope in a world that can currently seem turbulent, he referenced Martin Luther King’s reminder that “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice”.

He said, “You’ve just got to keep the faith and stay positive - that’s where the hope is.”

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