The Bishop of Bradford

Knowledge of Edward’s relationship with a twice divorced American woman, and that he wished to marry her, was withheld from the general British public and the British press maintained silence on the issue, however, it was widely discussed in the newspapers in the United States, Canada, Europe and elsewhere.

Until unlikely events in Yorkshire broke the silence.

The Bishop of Bradford, Dr A. W. F. Blunt, addressing the Bradford Diocesan Conference on December 1st 1936, described the deep religious significance of the coronation service and commented on the King’s need to show more awareness of his Christian duty. A reporter from The Telegraph and Argus was present and his story was picked up and published by The Yorkshire Post the following day. The editorial comment accompanying the Bishop’s remarks refers to rumours about the King without specifying what these might be but in using the words about the rumours “They … have plainly a foundation in fact” opened the flood gates and other national newspapers followed with comments of their own including references to a possible marriage.

On the 10th December 1936, Edward VIII signed the abdication papers.