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Papers cast their doubts aside over wisdom of historic tour

SHE arrived in Ireland to headlines of terrorism and bomb searches -- but the British media has now cast aside all doubts they may have had about the Queen's historic tour.

'Daily Mail' columnist and former young Tory Harry Phibbs led the gushing. "The Queen's visit to Ireland shows just what an asset she is to our country," was the headline of an online piece in which Phibbs declared the trip "one of her greatest diplomatic triumphs".

The weekly 'Spectator' magazine carried an "Ireland Notebook" by Mary Kenny which was tinged with regret.

"The Queen agreed to visit locations associated with those who rose against the Crown -- the Garden of Remembrance in Parnell Square -- and showed a graceful sense of respect. It has been impressive and even moving," she wrote.

"Yet it was also sad -- at least in Dublin. Because there is a small but extremely violent minority of dissenters, Dublin city was eerily empty of people."


But after the political sensitivities of the first two days of the visit, yesterday was about "just horses and showbiz", to quote the BBC Ireland correspondent Mark Simpson.

The Queen was in her element visiting the Irish National Stud.

"Whilst Her Majesty's visit to County Kildare may not be the most politically significant event of her Irish tour, it may at least be one of the most enjoyable," said the BBC's website.

The 'Daily Telegraph' website treated its readers to an array of equine photographs.

The everyday nature of Her Majesty enjoying her equestrian pleasures was reflected in the 'London Evening Standard' after the paper last night dropped the story off the news pages altogether.

Instead it preferred to have fun with Prince Philip's alleged comment of "You don't sound like a native" to a plummy-voiced Dublin girl in Trinity College.

After a strange few days, the royal coverage in the British media is slowly returning to normal.

Irish Independent