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Queen backs Journalists' Charity

The Queen has rubbed shoulders with leading figures from Fleet Street as she celebrated the 150th anniversary of a charity supporting journalists in need.

Newspaper editors, columnists, television broadcasters and senior executives from the media industry chatted to the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh at Stationers' Hall in the City of London.

The event recognised the achievements of the Journalists' Charity which since 1864 has been helping reporters and their dependents and has the Queen as patron.

Sky News presenter Anna Botting, who is a trustee of the charity, said: "Having seen her from afar it's wonderful to see her here supporting the charity, her family have been supporters for many years."

The broadcaster joked about how she had to get grips with royal etiquette: "We were told you had to say ma'am like jam, and I had to get to used to curtseying."

Mark Austin, an ITV News broadcaster and ambassador for the charity, said: "It's absolutely brilliant she's here in our 150th year."

He added laughing: "We were all lined up telling her about when we met her but she didn't remember.

"I first met her in 1995 in South Africa just after the elections. There was a reception on the royal yacht Britannia and I remember her saying she was very cross because she didn't see Robben Island as they came in."

The Journalists' Charity was founded by Charles Dickens and others and changed its name from the Newspaper Press Fund in 2005 to recognise the help it gives to reporters working across all parts of the industry.

Today the organisation runs retirement, care and residential homes and also provides emergency grants to those in urgent need of help.


From Belfast Telegraph