Queen Elizabeth gags royal household staff

December 28th, 2008 - 9:03 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Dec 28 (DPA) Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II has banned staff from revealing details of their work in a bid to prevent further embarrassing leaks of the goings-on in the royal household, according to reports Sunday.More than 200 butlers, cooks and general and cleaning staff are to sign confidentiality contracts by which they could lose their jobs for discussing any aspect of the royal household even with their own families, the News of the World reported.

Employees would also be required to return any royal souvenirs, letters, gifts and their personal diaries once they leave the monarch’s service.

They would also not be allowed to keep harmless “thank you” notes from royals or Christmas gift tags, the newspaper said.

The report quoted a palace employee as saying: “We will fight this. It’s like working for M15,” a reference to the British intelligence service.

The gagging order follows incidents involving former palace employees, including the late Princess Diana’s butler Paul Burrell, who have embarrassed the palace and enriched themselves through the sale of royal memorabilia and secrets.

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