Prince William and Kate Middleton sing God Save the Queen
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The Royal Family remains to be a source of great intrigue, fascination and pride for most Britons. Much of their personal lives are shielded from view, despite biographies and TV programmes such as The Crown claiming to give a glimpse into the intimate workings of the Palace. One such book sheds a light on how royals behave behind closed doors, with an expert revealing how the Queen and other family members show their disapproval.
Gyles Brandreth, a royal biographer and close friend of the late Duke of Edinburgh, has shared his thoughts in his newly revised book, Philip: The Final Portrait.
One thing he has noticed, having spent time in the royal fold, is that family members are very good at saying nothing at all.
He said: “From my observation of them, the members of this family are masters of the art of saying nothing.
“Sometimes they do it to protect themselves.
“Sometimes they do it to indicate that a conversation is at an end.
“Often they do it to indicate disapproval.”
Mr Brandreth then gave an example in the footnote, and said Princess Anne is claimed to have used this technique in the past.
He wrote: “In October 2003 the press carried reports of an employment tribunal that turned down a claim for unfair dismissal brought against Princess Anne, the Princess Royal, by one Caroline Brown, who for thirteen years was housekeeper at Gatcombe Park, the Princess’s home in Gloucestershire.
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“Ms Brown told the tribunal what happened when she took an unexpected day off: ‘That evening when HRH returned from London she was plainly not speaking to me.
“This is the royal way of showing disapproval.'”
But despite her claims the tribunal found in favour of Princess Anne and her husband Commodore Timothy Laurence.
Chairman of the tribunal Chris Tickle said: “The tribunal finds that the applicant was fairly dismissed.”
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Another royal expert has said the Queen will never verbally express her disapproval at someone, but often gives small hints in how she speaks.
Karen Dolby, author of a number of royal books including the The Wicked Wit Of… series featuring the Queen, Prince Margaret and Prince Philip, said Her Majesty often changes her tone in voice to indicate how she truly feels.
The expert told Fabulous magazine: “I think that she tends to avoid confrontation and she probably maintains a polite dignity whatever.
“I heard that she won’t necessarily openly disagree with someone.
“But [the Queen] has a very specific way of saying ‘oh really’ or ‘fascinating’ or ‘thrilling’ and it’s all in the tone and intonation and the pause between saying it and the look she gives as to whether she actually agrees with you or not.”
Philip: The Final Portrait by Gyles Brandreth is available to buy now.
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