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University challenge to Paxman as students give HIM grilling for a change

PUBLISHED: 16:38 08 July 2008 | UPDATED: 13:25 05 October 2010

Tables turn as Paxman is challenged by university students

Tables turn as Paxman is challenged by university students

JEREMY Paxman gave a provocative lecture to university students about the future of the monarchy in a packed lecture theatre in London’s East End. The BBC2 Newsnight presenter, famous for giving Westminster politicians a good grilling, came in for a heavy questions-and-answer session from his young audience as he talked about the future of the Royal family

By Julia Gregory

JOURNALIST and broadcaster Jeremy Paxman gave a provocative lecture to university students about the future of the monarchy in a packed lecture theatre in London's East End.

The BBC2 Newsnight presenter, famous for giving Westminster politicians a good grilling, came in for a heavy questions-and-answer session from his young audience as he talked about the future of the Royal family.

Paxman, who also presents TV's University Challenge, was giving the third Anthony Sampson Anatomy of Britain lecture at the People's Palace at Queen Mary College in Mile End.

He was a confirmed republican when he started researching his book on Royalty, but now wasn't so sure there's any value in getting rid of the royal institution, he told his audience.

Being in the role of the Monarch was unenviable. The Queen believes it is her religious duty to carry on and Paxman doubts she would ever abdicate.

The lecture was arranged by Fellow of History Prof Peter Hennessy, who set up the Mile End Group for lively debate and discussion.

He had been trying to get Paxman to speak at the university for years.

Paxman said he couldn't remember a team from Queen Mary's ever having competed in the general knowledge show and urged students to get a team together.

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