News Martina Devlin

Tuesday 6 December 2016

Martina Devlin: How dad learned to tolerate my mother's royal affair

Published 16/05/2011 | 05:00

SHE is like a regal version of the film 'Brief Encounter' with her commitment to duty and her clipped vowel sounds. But, for a woman who represents positive virtues such as Doing The Right Thing, Queen Elizabeth II has had a polarising effect.

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I was conscious of it from an early age growing up in the North, where a Jekyll and Hyde attitude to her existed -- not only in the community generally, but specifically in my family.

My mother, a southerner, was fascinated by the queen; in her eyes, she had all the allure of Hollywood, with the mystique of majesty for good measure. My father, a northerner, regarded the queen as a symbol of Britain's ongoing occupation of Ireland.

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