‘Abolish licence fee!’ BBC blasted for ‘ridiculing’ portrait of Queen and Union flag

BBC Breakfast: Charlie Stayt pokes fun at Robert Jenrick's flag

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BBC Breakfast presenter Charlie Stayt commented that Mr Jenrick’s flag was “not up to standard size” and was “just a little bit small”. Co-host Naga Munchetty started uncontrollably laughing before pointing out the Cabinet minister’s portrait of Her Majesty hanging on the wall.

Mr Stayt added that “we’ve seen it everyday” in an apparent reference to other ministers displaying the Union Jack during TV interviews.

But the remarks by the BBC presenters sparked a furious backlash on Twitter.

One person commented: “I am not a royalist, but this is disgraceful.

“BBC presenters sniggering and ridiculing our national flag and picture of the Queen in an office or flat of one of her Ministers.”

Conservative MP Daniel Kawczynski demanded an end to the licence fee.

He fumed: “Naga Munchetty & Charlie Stayt making fun of Government Minister for proudly displaying British flag & portrait of our Queen in his office so clearly demonstrates we really do need to abolish licence fee.”

Baroness Hoey added: “This is exactly why @BBCNews should no longer be allowed to charge a licence fee – always snidy about anyone standing up for our country and Her Majesty. #defundthebbc.”

The Daily Mail’s Saturday diary editor Richard Eden tweeted: “This is a revealing insight into attitudes towards patriotism and monarchy at the #BBC. #royal.”

Conservative Home chief executive Mark Mallace wrote: “What a bizarre thing for the BBC to sneer and snigger at.

“What’s wrong with ministers of the British government having the flag and the monarch on display?”

The Defund The BBC campaign group said: “The BBC is a disgraceful, anti-British organisation. Stop paying for it. #DefundTheBBC.”

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Another Twitter user fumed: “#CharlieStayt belittling the Union flag whilst #NagaMunchetty…sniggers at the Queen. BBC is unwatchable. #DefundBBC.”

Meanwhile, ex-BBC presenter Andrew Neil tweeted: “Sometimes the BBC forgets what the first B stands for.” Andrew Neil skewers BBC presenter over Union Jack jibe ‘Forgets what first B stands for!’

However other Twitter users found the presenters’ comments more entertaining.

Ms Munchetty liked a string of tweets including one which read: “I loved @TVNaga01 losing it in the background.”

The BBC presenter also liked a tweet which said: “@BBCBreakfast Charlie pulls a cracker mentioning Jenrick’s flag being too small.

“Thought @TVNaga01 was going to lay an egg.”

A BBC spokesperson said: “It was a light-hearted, off the cuff comment. No offence was intended.”

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