1681865857 origin 1

The anti-monarchist group Republic accuses the BBC of a lack of impartiality in royal coverage

origin 1Anti-monarchist group Republic are protesting the coronation of King Charles and have accused the BBC of a lack of impartiality in its coverage. © Republic – AFP – Getty

While many are gearing up to celebrate the coronation of King Charles next monththe British anti-monarchist group Republic accused the BBC of a lack of impartiality in its coverage.

The campaign group, which says it wants “to see the monarchy abolished and the king replaced with an elected and democratic head of state”, accused the broadcaster of failing to account for the monarchy.

They sent a letter to David Jordan, director of editorial and political standards at the BBC, saying the complaint was “particularly urgent in light of the impending coronation”.

Republic accuses the BBC of not “voicing a reasonable balance of views on the issue”.

Republic Chief Executive Graham Smith says in the letter that “the evidence suggests that the BBC not only fails to be impartial, it makes no attempt to be impartial or level-headed and, most shockingly, is openly colluding with the palace in its cover”.

“It should be a source of deep shame to all involved that, instead of such fearless reporting, we have insipid, vacuous and dishonest coverage by a BBC fearing public opprobrium and the influence of building”.

origin 1Not My King Protests – March 2023AFP

The letter refers to a recent YouGov poll this reveals that the majority of Britons were not interested in the coronation. In this month’s survey of more than 3,000 adults, 35% said they “didn’t worry much” about the event and 29% said they didn’t worry at all.

“A recent YouGov poll showed only 15% of the public are excited about the coronation, with a majority uninterested. BBC coverage will suggest the opposite is true,” Smith says.

“Support for the abolition of the monarchy has risen by more than 30%, and support for the monarchy among people under 40 has fallen below 50%. Yet none of this is reflected in the BBC’s coverage.”

In response, a BBC spokesperson said: “We believe our reporting is fair and duly impartial, and BBC News always seeks to reflect a range of viewpoints in our actual coverage.”

Who is Republic and what is #NotMyKing?

The anti-monarchist group has called for an end to the UK’s constitutional monarchy system and believes that hereditary public offices go against all democratic principles.

The movement gained momentum after the death of Queen Elizabeth II, and the #NotMyKing hashtag has been making the rounds on social media ever since.

Republic was founded as a lobby group in 2006 and is a member organization of Common Cause – the alliance of republican movements in the Commonwealth – as well as the Stockholm-based Alliance of European Republican Movements. It is currently directed by Peter Cafferkey.

The group protested the royal wedding of Prince William and Princess Catherine in 2011 and the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in 2018.

Following the Queen’s death, anti-monarchy billboards were put up in 18 cities across the UK and a number of London boroughs. Each of the billboards featured a hashtag #NotMyKing alongside a photo of King Charles, an initiative that coincided with Republic’s crowdfunding appeal. In October 2022, the group said its membership was growing rapidly and its revenue was expected to reach a quarter of a million pounds in 2022.

origin 1Not My King billboards began appearing in London, Newcastle, Edinburgh, Glasgow and other major UK cities, following the Queen’s deathrepublic.org.uk

The group also held protests that included booing King Charles and Queen Camilla last month, as well as an anti-monarchy protest in London near Westminster Abbey to mark Commonwealth Day – the Commonwealth of Nations’ annual celebration since 1977 .

The group carried banners reading “Not My King”, “Down with the Crown” and “Racist Royal Family”.

origin 1Protest against the monarchy in London, near Westminster AbbeyAFP
origin 1Placards from the March 2023 protests read: “racist royal family” AFP

The Republic plans to protest on Coronation Day at Westminster Abbey on May 6. Their website offers merchandise for protests, as well as a pledge to protestin which they state that “this is where we make our objection strong, visible, and impossible to ignore.”

origin 1Merchandise for sale on the Republic Republic website
origin 1Cartels proposed by RepubblicaRepubblica

They have created a path for the protest and are asking those who join them to wear yellow – and if people carry their own sign, make it “black text on yellow background if you can!”

origin 1Coronation Protest Planned RouteRepublic

The Republic is reportedly expecting more than a thousand people at the next protest.