Why Graham Norton felt like ‘an onlooker’ as Britain mourned the Queen

TV presenter Graham Norton said he felt like an outsider on the day of the Queen Elizabeth’s funeral.

Despite living in England for over 40 years, the Cork native said he didn’t have the same connection with her as those who grew up there, and seeing how deeply the country mourned her was “humbling”. 

“I have lived in Britain for nearly 40 years and I was fond of the queen and respected her but they have been born to know her,” he told Ryan Tubridy on tonight’s The Late Late Show on RTÉ One. 

“If you went to school you learned about her, you grew up with her on the money, you prayed for her at mass, that was the difference that made me feel like ‘oh wow I am still an outsider’.

“It was humbling.”

He added that he didn’t believe the days of mourning Queen Elizabeth in England were “manufactured” and that it all felt “sincere.”

Asked if he has met King Charles before, Graham said he hadn’t but had met Prince Andrew and Prince Harry.

“I met Harry in the basement of a club, I was coming out of the toilet and I heard him say ‘Graham Norton what are you doing here!’

“But I’ve never met the queen, Camilla, or Charles.”

Graham told Tubridy that his radio show was almost cancelled before the Queen’s funeral, but he’s glad it wasn’t in the end because they read out listeners’ fond memories of her. 

“It was strange because I do this show on Virgin Radio which is up-tempo music, a stupid silly show and they talked about cancelling it but then they said ‘no, let’s not cancel it,’” he said.

“We usually celebrate all these happy milestones at the weekend, like people’s birthdays, and actually [the Queen’s death] is a milestone in all these people lives, so these were some of the happiest memories in radio.”

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