BBC obituary editor calls 20th anniversary Princess Diana coverage ‘mawkish drivel’

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The obituary editor for the BBC has reportedly said he is “bored” of extensive media coverage of Princess Diana’s death and branded it “mawkish drivel”.

Nick Serpell, who has worked at the BBC since 1995, said he hoped the 20th anniversary of her death on 31 August 1997 would be the last time the public was subject to wide-ranging coverage of Diana Spencer.

In a since-deleted private Facebook post seen by the Mail, he said: “Hopefully today will the last on which we have to suffer mawkish media Diana drivel.”

Mr Serpell, who is responsible for providing obituaries of high-profile individuals across TV, radio and online, admitted he was “bored” of media attention in response to a question by BBC presenter Simon McCoy.

Mr McCoy tweeted: “Broadcasting BBC News Channel live from Kensington Palace tomorrow. 20 years since death of Diana – seems like yesterday. Your thoughts?”

In a since deleted tweet Mr Serpell hit back, saying: “Bored”.

He also retweeted a post by Times columnist Iain Martin saying: “Incredible drivel on BBC Newsnight about Diana. It is simply not the case everyone capitulated to the madness that week. Millions of us didn’t.”

“People have all sorts of opinions. It was a private post, though I do appreciate that social media can sometimes be a very public place,” Mr Serpell has now told the publication.

People have laid tributes to Princess Diana, who died when she was just 36 years old, outside Kensington Palace on Thursday ahead of a remembrance service.

Princess Diana was killed along with her lover Dodi al-Fayed when a limousine carrying them crashed in a Paris tunnel as it drove away from paparazzi.

Mr Serpell and the BBC did not immediately respond to requests for comment.


Click to view the original article on The Independent.

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The Independent is a centrist British online newspaper. Established in 1986 as an independent national morning newspaper published in London, it was controlled by Tony O’Reilly's Independent News & Media from 1997, and sold to Alexander Lebedev in 2010. It ceased to be produced in print in March 2016.Nicknamed the Indy, it began as a broadsheet newspaper, but changed to tabloid or "compact" format in 2003. Regarded as coming from the centre-left, on culture and politics, it tends to take a more pro-market stance on economic issues. It has not affiliated itself with any political party and features a range of views.

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