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Dame Kelly Holmes explains 'poignant' reason she decided not to wear black after Queen's death

Gregory Robinson

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Dame Kelly Holmes explains 'poignant' reason she decided not to wear black after Queen's death

Featured Image Credit: ITV/ PA Images / Alamy Stock Photo

Dame Kelly Holmes has shared the reason why she decided to forego wearing black during an appearance on ITV News in the wake of the Queen’s death.

The iconic 52-year-old Olympic gold medal winner was interviewed on ITV’s daytime news special today following the death of Her Majesty on Thursday.

Dame Kelly Holmes in the ITV News studio. Credit: ITV.
Dame Kelly Holmes in the ITV News studio. Credit: ITV.

Some viewers were left feeling confused as Dame Kelly wore an orange blazer over a black top. ITV's royal editor Chris Shipp and news presenter Tom Bradby both wore black suits and ties.

One person asked on Twitter: “Dame Kelly Holmes wearing orange instead of black, what's all that about?”

A second Twitter user wrote: “Dame Kelly Holmes wearing orange today of all days!”

A third person tagged the official ITV News Twitter account and asked: “Erm, did @itvnews not give Kelly Holmes the memo to wear black? Why is she in bright orange?”

And a fourth quipped: “Orange is not the new black. Why did no one stop Kelly Holmes?”

While wearing black is normal during a period of mourning, which the UK is in after the monarch’s death aged 96, there is a special meaning behind Dame Kelly’s outfit.

The retired athlete met the Queen on several occasions throughout her career and she shared her memories of her with viewers.

“Her aura, every time I’ve met her - you’re just astounded by her presence,” she said.

“People might say to me, ‘why did you wear bright on television?’ Every time I met her, she had a solid block of colour on and so today, this is for Her Majesty.”

Dame Kelly Holmes and the Queen in October 2004. Credit: REUTERS / Alamy Stock Photo.
Dame Kelly Holmes and the Queen in October 2004. Credit: REUTERS / Alamy Stock Photo.

Dame Kelly also reminded those at home of the Queen’s historic connection to the Olympics. “When it comes to sport, let's remember she’s the only person to have sworn in two Olympic Games – the 1976 Montreal Games and 2012 Olympic Games,” she said.

“As a sportsperson, everything you do is in that vein. If you have the British flag flying and the national anthem playing, I've never been so proud to stand there and sing, at the time, God Save the Queen.

“I find it very hard to change my mindset now going forward, because it’s all we’ve ever known. I was a multiple Commonwealth champion – everything I've done has been a connection.”

She added: “From a personal point of view, it means so much to be able to talk about her and to know what impact she has had on my life – but then that’s a multitude of people that have that same connection.”

Topics: News, ITV, The Queen, Royal Family

Gregory Robinson
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