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"Reporting on royalty is not proper journalism"

WORLD: Is the Queen's death in some ways a moment you're waiting for as a Royal Correspondent?</p>Jonny Dymond: It's difficult.

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"Reporting on royalty is not proper journalism"

WORLD: Is the Queen's death in some ways a moment you're waiting for as a Royal Correspondent?

Jonny Dymond: It's difficult. Of course it is from a professional point of view. Logically, we knew that it would happen at some point and prepared for a long time, thinking about it a lot. And now, of course, there is a lot going on. But it's also a personal moment. Not only am I a royal reporter, I am also a British citizen, although not a passionate monarchist.

WORLD: How precisely can a royal reporter prepare for the death of the Queen?

Dymond: I've had a few sentences ready for a while in case the moment comes and I'm suddenly overwhelmed. No flashcards or anything, but I had a few opening comments ready. I also have a good memory and of course I've researched the Queen's life extensively. In fact, however, so much has happened since the day of death that we reflect less than report. For those who enjoy writing and reporting, the current environment is of course fascinating.

WORLD: Everyday life as a Royal Correspondent isn't always that exciting?

Dymond: No. Although I started at a very high news period five years ago. First Harry and Meghan's wedding, then Megxit, the Prince Andrew scandal. Then the death of Prince Philip, last spring the celebrations for the 70th anniversary of the throne. Compared to some of its predecessors, I've had a very busy period. And very worthwhile.

WORLD: You were previously a correspondent all over the world. Did you want to be a Windsor reporter?

Dymond: No. The BBC asked me. To be honest, I wasn't convinced at first. In a way, reporting on royalty is not proper journalism. Because the palace has the monopoly over the information. There are very few sources. It is particularly difficult for television that the royals give almost no interviews. It's kind of a filter job, you have to pull a lot of sources together to make a story. But in times like these it is of course a great pleasure.

WORLD: Especially since the Queen means so much to this country.

Dymond: Yes, it's fascinating how an institution means so many things to so many people. Shortly after taking up this post, I dreamed of the Queen for the first time – which, by the way, three quarters of Brits have done. This is really amazing! I always think of the phrase by Harold Nicholson, a British diplomat. He was standing at the window of Buckingham Palace when the news broke that George VI. had died. He looked at the gathering crowd and said, "What a strange thing the monarchy is." I think so too -- strange, strangely glorious, strangely funny, strangely irrational.

WORLD: And so very British?

Dymond: We're standing right here in front of Buckingham Palace, on the Mall. Let's take the parades for the jubilee or other occasions. They're full of crazy nonsense. And at the same time a reminder that this is a country comfortable with its own eccentricities. The whole thing is eccentric. The institution is eccentric. And, yes, very British.

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