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Dan Walker defends David Beckham against critics who claimed he was only in line to get publicity

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Dan Walker has defended David Beckham after the former England captain was accused of visiting the Queen who was lying in state for ‘exposure’ purposes.

Beckham’s journey was widely reported after he was seen queuing among thousands of others on his way to Westminster Hall.

But hidden among the crowd, Becks waited more than 13 hours to pay his respects to the Queen, despite even being given the chance to jump in line by an MP.

Dan Walker (pictured) has defended David Beckham after the former England captain was accused of visiting the Queen lying in state for ‘exposure’ purposes

Beckham's journey was widely reported after he was seen queuing among thousands of others on his way to Westminster Hall

Beckham’s journey was widely reported after he was seen queuing among thousands of others on his way to Westminster Hall

Former BBC Breakfast presenter later praised 47-year-old Beckham on Twitter, writing: ‘Fair play to David Beckham for taking part in the #queueforthequeue. 12 hours plus apparently to pay his respects.’

However, one user took the opportunity to criticize Beckham, prompting Walker to support the star.

“He had to show his face, huh, any chance of exposure,” the user tweeted.

Dan, 45, meanwhile replied: ‘Speak to yourself Chris. He’s been here since 2 o’clock this morning. If he wants headlines, he jumps to the chippy in his pajamas.’

Other users supported Beckham on the social media platform to defend him, however with one writing: “Fair play to him.

Celebrities are the same as all of us. No one should stand in line, which makes celebrities extra special in this kind of situation, the Queen loved us anyway.

“Nice David and all the other famous people who have waited patiently.”

Another commented: “Well done to David Beckham and to Susannah Reid, who both queued for hours to pay their respects to Her Majesty the Queen, while some so-called ‘celebrities’ jumped in line.”

A third tweeted, “Too bad all the other so-called celebrities didn’t do the same.”

Another added: ‘Very good, why should celebs be treated differently than the public. Well done Becks.’

Dressed in a suit that hid his famous tattoos, a cap and a Covid mask, Beckham, 47, joined mourners in the “Elizabeth Line” at 2 a.m., undetected by the crowd for hours as he shuffled away from Southwark Park to Westminster Hall.

After queuing for 13 hours, Beckham looked emotional as he walked past the coffin to pay his respects and at one point wiped a tear from the corner of his eye. As England captain, he met the Queen several times and received his OBE from her in 2003.

Football legend David Beckham bowed his head in solemn tribute to Her Majesty The Queen at Westminster Hall

Football legend David Beckham bowed his head in solemn tribute to Her Majesty The Queen at Westminster Hall

Beckham had been offered the chance to skip the line by an MP but he declined the offer, saying his grandfather Joseph West - a staunch royalist and the man who called the footballer his 'real hero' - would have been disappointed

Beckham had been offered the chance to skip the line by an MP but he declined the offer, saying his grandfather Joseph West – a staunch royalist and the man who called the footballer his ‘real hero’ – would have been disappointed

Along with those around him, who initially helped keep his secret, Beckham said he survived on the very unfootballer-like diet of “Pringles, sorbet lemons, sandwiches, coffee and donuts.”

“We all want to be here together. We all want to experience something where we celebrate our Queen’s wonderful life and I think something like this is meant to be shared today,” he told BBC News.

The former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder finally saw his cover blown up shortly after noon, when members of the public took to social media to share the news that he was there.

Beckham was invited to view Her Majesty’s casket by a Member of Parliament, who can bring up to four guests, to jump in for the lead.

But he declined the offer, saying his grandfather Joseph West – a staunch royalist and the man the footballer has called his “real hero” – would have been disappointed.

A source said: ‘David could have avoided all the queues, but he wanted to be like everyone else. He said his grandfather wouldn’t have done that [jumped the queue] so neither does he. He’d been wondering all week when was the best time to go and finally he went for this morning.

David grew up in an East End family who were real royalists – the kind that would be in the spotlight when the national anthem was played. He wanted to see the Queen like any other member of the public.”

He has regularly shared on his Instagram about his fondness for her and when she passed away last week he wrote: 'I am really saddened by the passing of Her Majesty The Queen'

He has regularly shared on his Instagram about his fondness for her and when she passed away last week he wrote: ‘I am really saddened by the passing of Her Majesty The Queen’

Beckham also chose to dress in a suit because he said his grandfather, who died in 2009 at the age of 83, would have done so.

“Every time we stood there when we wore those Three Lion shirts and I had my bracelet, and we sang God save our Queen, that was something that meant so much to us. Every time we did it was something special,” Beckham told reporters.

“So this day would always be difficult. It’s hard for the nation, it’s hard for everyone around the world because I think everyone is feeling it, and our thoughts are with the family and of course everyone here today. Because it is special to be here, to celebrate and to hear the different stories people have to tell. I thought coming at 2am would make it a bit quieter – I was wrong.

“Probably the most special moment for me was when I got my OBE. I took my grandparents, who really raised me to be a huge royalist and a fan of the royal family, and of course I had my wife there too.

‘To get up, to get my honor, but also Her Majesty, to ask questions, to talk, I was so lucky to have been able to experience a few moments in my life.

“Because we can all see with the love that was shown, how special she was and the legacy she leaves behind. It’s a sad day, but it’s a day for us to remember the incredible legacy she left behind.”

The former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder finally saw his cover blown up shortly after noon, when members of the public took to social media to share the news that he was there

The former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder finally saw his cover blown up shortly after noon, when members of the public took to social media to share the news that he was there

He has shared his fondness for her on his Instagram regularly and when she passed away last week, he wrote: ‘I am truly saddened by the passing of Her Majesty The Queen. What an outpouring of love and respect we saw for the platinum anniversary for her lifetime of service.

“How devastated we all feel today, shows what she has meant to people in this country and around the world. How much she inspired us with her leadership. How she comforted us in difficult times.’

When asked how the queue had been on its knees, he replied, “The knees are fine, it’s the back and the feet.”

A woman who had queued next to Beckham told BBC News: ‘Great respect for him. He has stood by us and paid his respects as he pleases and I love that.”

Other celebrities lining up included Good Morning Britain presenter Susanna Reid, who waited more than seven hours with her mother to see the Queen’s coffin laid out in state.

The 51-year-old announcer wrote on Twitter: “I have just experienced a moment in history… at once majestic and peaceful.”

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