A BBC cameraman was reportedly thrown out of Coronation rehearsals – and banned from covering the main event – after King Charles thought he was secretly trying to film a walkthrough for a key moment.
The King spotted the BBC employee out of the corner of his eye and was apparently concerned he was covertly attempting to film when he shouldn’t have been. And top-level sources have said that Charles told officials: “He’s not filming my Coronation.”
The veteran cameraman was then escorted out of Westminster Abbey by security. Senior sources have said that the journalist had left his officially assigned post near the entrance and was spotted attempting to view the sacred anointing run-through. They say the cameraman had his mobile phone out, and was lingering near the screens.
The ‘senior’ cameraman was then escorted out of the Abbey by security in front of puzzled dignitaries. The cameraman’s filming accreditation was reportedly torn up by a BBC boss on the steps of the Abbey.
He was suspended with immediate effect and banned from working for the national broadcaster over the Coronation weekend. The man’s “pattern of behaviour” had alarmed witnesses according to insiders, who also reportedly feared he was attempting to shoot unauthorised footage of Charles on his phone.
“Charles spotted the cameraman trying to film him during the run-through for the most sensitive part of the ceremony. The BBC guy was looking shifty as he lurked in view of the screens holding his mobile phone.
“He had no business being there whatsoever. He had an accredited spot in the Abbey. It is highly irregular for any journalist to leave their set position in such circumstances.
“And it’s deeply concerning to think he would be trying to film precious moments deliberately hidden from public view.”
The rehearsal had included going over the most important act of the religious ceremony, when the King was anointed with holy oil.
This section of the coronation was always going to be hidden from both spectators in the Abbey and those watching on television at home.
Another source said: “It is a horrendous suggestion that the King’s privacy would be invaded in this way.
“The rehearsal was a stressful, anxious time for everyone concerned. The BBC senior cameraman was a disgrace and rightly given his marching orders.”
This comes as pressure mount on the BBC after being criticised for its “anti-competitive” restriction of access to Coronation coverage.
It is believed it backed down prior to it starting.
The man’s removal from the Abbey was not commented on by Buckingham Palace.
The BBC has said it will not comment on individual employees.