Source: The Mercury, 27 March, 2001, p.XX
BRITONS have told the Queen the royal family is irrelevant and poor value in a devastating report compiled for her by pollsters MORI. It suggested fewer than one in four people thought the royals were hard-working and only one in 10 thought them good value. More than half of those questioned thought they were "good for Britain's image abroad" but just under half thought they were "important to Britain", almost a quarter believed them "remote" and a mere 9 per cent said they were "relevant". The poll was commissioned to assist planning for the Queen's Golden Jubilee celebrations next year, which is seen by advisers as the perfect opportunity for her to "connect" with the people - particularly the young. The findings will be a blow for the royals, who believed they had been successfully rebuilding their image, helped by highly paid advisers, since the death of Princess Diana. The Queen is said to have received the supposedly secret report in stony silence. There was some encouragement, though: those who have analysed the survey told the Queen the "Prince William effect" had helped promote the royals' image and only 10 per cent of 15- 21-year-olds -- re- garded as the key age group by advisers -- said the royals were "remote" and 72 per cent of that age group said they were "in touch" with Britain. It is only the second time such a survey has been commissioned and the findings make it plain the country believes the royal family should be doing more. MORI polled 2092 people aged 15 and over in England, Wales and Scotland last month. The Prince of Wales was the only family member singled out in specific questions, almost half of those polled praising, in particular, his support for charities and for speaking out. The desire for the monarchy to be abolished is strongest in Scotland, Wales and London especially among men aged 35-44. Predictably, support for the royals was strongest - 87 per cent- from men and women aged over 65. Daily Mail
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