Edward VIII | The king who gave up the throne for the woman he loved

A Foot in the Door | Alex Dempster

How King Edward VIII's affair was made public.

CHANNEL | Regional Programme

FIRST BROADCAST | 22 March 1983

DURATION | 14 minutes 18 seconds

FIRSTBROADCAST

1983

Synopsis

The journalist who first broke the story about King Edward VIII's affair with Mrs Wallis Simpson in the British press shares his memories of the event that led to his decision to file such a scandalous scoop. Following a tip-off about a VIP's arrival at Aberdeen railway station, journalist Alex Dempster uncovered an explosive story that ended Fleet Street's 'conspiracy of silence' and, ultimately, led to the King's abdication.

Did you know?

After the King's affair with Mrs Simpson had been made public, cabinet minister Sir Samuel Hoare warned of the need to maintain silence on such matters for the good of the country and the Empire: 'We British know by instinct that we are faced with a situation in which it is much wiser to keep silence and neither to make speeches nor to bandy about controversial remarks. We British, the citizens of a great country and a great Empire, who have passed through many troubles, have learned when to speak and when to keep silence.' Until this point, this had also been the attitude of powerful figures in the press and the personal lives of the Royal Family had remained unreported.

Contributors

Ninian Reid
Reporter
Alex Dempster
Contributor
Subject of programme
Subject of programme

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Documents

A Radio Times article about Edward VIII, dated January 1936.

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