A Carolean Paean

Seventy years later, King Charles’s moment has come. There are no doubts about his character or his motives. The only variables are what he can accomplish and how much time the gods will grant him. Simon De Burton delivers The Rake’s alternative coronation homage.
Charles sitting in his garden at Highgrove in Gloucestershire in 1986.

Before I discovered it was possible to make a living from writing in ways that did not involve churning out stories for the popular press, I worked in the dog-eat-dog world of news agency journalism, where many young reporters cut their teeth. We were typically in our twenties and had been ‘indentured’ with a parochial paper before finding work with an agency as a conduit to a job on the ‘nationals’. Said national newspapers use such agencies to root out stories that — if deemed sufficiently interesting — are invariably passed on to the paper’s own, better paid, correspondents, who tweak them a bit and take all the glory. In other words, agency types are the journalistic equivalent of foot soldiers. They are the ones who do the donkey work, take the greater risks (of which there are more than you might imagine), and, in the grand scheme of things, are deemed to be entirely dispensable.


Simon de Burton


April 2023


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