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Last Updated: Thursday, 20 November, 2003, 10:20 GMT
More royal security revelations
Buckingham Palace
An undercover reporter revealed a flaw in Buckingham Palace security
An undercover reporter who got a job at Buckingham Palace has said security at Windsor Castle is "even more shocking".

The Daily Mirror's Ryan Parry said he worked as a footman at Windsor for four days, serving the Queen food and drinks and taking her post and newspapers.

He said security should have been improved after "comedy terrorist" Aaron Barschak crashed a party there in June.

A review of Buckingham Palace security is to go ahead after Mr Parry was given the job there on false references.

Mr Parry wrote that on his first day at Windsor the van he was in was ushered in without being checked.

He said he found "empty police sentry points, unguarded doors, unchecked baggage, and a lack of interest in visitors".

Buckingham Palace security breaches
1982 - Michael Fagan enters Queen's bedroom
1989 - Mentally-ill Michael Crook walks past armed guards
1990 - Two separate break-ins
1991 - Man gets within yards of Queen's private apartments
1992 - Kevin McMahon arrested inside grounds twice in a week
1994 - Naked paraglider lands on palace roof
1995 - Student John Gillard rams gates with car
1997 - Absconded mental patient wanders grounds
2003 - Undercover reporter gains job as footman using fake reference
While at Windsor he gained his closest access to the Queen, carrying food to her apartments, serving her gin and Dubonnet and delivering newspapers and private mail to her room.

He took photos of the Queen's breakfast table, the swimming pool complex and the kitchens.

He also divulged details of the Queen's taste in television viewing, including EastEnders, The Bill, Kirsty's Home Videos and videoed re-runs of the racing.

He is pictured on the front of the paper walking the Queen's corgis at the castle.

Security review

Mr Parry described on Wednesday how he had gained the Buckingham Palace job with a fake reference and had access to private suites.

His report, which coincided with the start of George Bush's state visit to Britain, raised fears for the safety of the US president.

Following the revelation of the Buckingham Palace breach, Home Secretary David Blunkett announced a security review, focusing on the vetting of job applicants.

Other royal security breaches
1992 - Intruder drinks whisky in St James's Palace
1994 - Break-in at St James's Palace;
2002 - Drunken intruder reportedly knocks on Princess Anne's door at St James's Palace
2003 - Man arrested in Windsor Castle grounds, man gatecrashes Prince William's birthday party in Windsor Castle

He said while the Home Office made security and criminal checks, it was the responsibility of Buckingham Palace to carry out employment checks.

In the case of Mr Parry, the employment checks were "insufficient", Mr Blunkett told the House of Commons when announcing the review by the independent Security Commission.

Mr Barschak caused uproar after gatecrashing the 21st birthday party of Prince William, attended by the Queen and many senior royals.

He bypassed police, setting off six alarms and appearing on CCTV several times without sparking a response.

In a bizarre costume of peach-coloured dress and beard, police at the royal party assumed Mr Barschak was just another guest in fancy dress and let him in to the party.

The comedian was only arrested after he had interrupted a speech by Prince William, and kissed him.




SEE ALSO:
Inquiry into palace intruder
15 Dec 02  |  UK News


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