Inside This Morning’s summer of chaos – Holly Willoughby and Philip Schofield queue jump row to controversial NTA snub | The Sun

FOR almost three decades This Morning has been riding high in daytime ratings and presenters Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby have been TV's golden couple.

But the shine seems to have come off the popular show in recent months – with reports of backstage feuds and viewers taking aim at “tone deaf” moments.

This week producers were forced to issue a statement after Holly and Phil were accused of queue-jumping at Westminster Hall, where the Queen was lying in state.

One furious mourner tweeted a picture of the pair at the Hall, where many had queued for up to 14 hours to file past the late monarch’s coffin.

She wrote: “This is a photo taken by my sister’s husband yesterday, after he had queued with my sister, their 10-year-old daughter and my disabled mum for 13+ hours. My mum was ushered out of @Hollywills and @Schofe way without even a thanks.”

Viewers called for a boycott of the show and launched a petition to have the presenting duo axed.


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ITV defended the pair, explaining they were there to film a segment for the show.

In an Instagram post, producers wrote: "We asked Phillip and Holly to be part of a film for this Tuesday’s programme.

“They did not jump the queue, have VIP access or file past the Queen lying in state – but instead were there in a professional capacity as part of the world’s media to report on the event.”

This Morning was cancelled today, as ITV switched to blanket coverage of the Queen’s funeral amid the row.  

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The backlash followed reports viewers prefer Alison Hammond and Dermot O’Leary to the main hosts, and a controversial National Television Awards snub.

Here we take a look at the host of troubles that have hit the beleaguered show this summer. 

‘Disrespectful’ presenter

Presenter Alice Beer came under fire after interviews with mourners in the queue waiting to file past the Queen’s coffin were seen as “disrespectful”.

She was slammed for handing out doughnuts on the Albert Embankment and joking it was a “dress rehearsal” for Reading Festival. 

Handing out Krispy Kremes, she said: "We can pay our respects and eat doughnuts at the same time… I’ve become the most popular person in the queue."

Alice stopped to speak to a young man waiting with his mum in the queue, and added: "You would think it would be just staunch royalists here but no we’ve got some teenagers."

Commenting on the drizzle, she told him: "Mind you it’s a bit like Reading festival… you'll be doing that next year!"

One viewer raged: "That woman interviewing people in the queue to see the Queen's coffin needs sacking!!! How disrespectful!! It’s not a festival queue!!!"

The following day Alice was relocated to Westminster Hall, with her spot in the queue taken by former ITV newsreader Isla Traquair.

Holly’s NTA snub

The nominations for the National Television Awards are usually cause for celebration in the This Morning camp.

The main presenters have been nominated for gongs numerous times in previous years.

But the latest list, announced last month, was seen as a snub to Holly and Phil as neither were named in the Best Presenter category.

To add insult to injury, co-host Alison Hammond was given a nod in the category. 

Feud rumours

Presenters Dermot O’Leary and Alison Hammond replaced husband and wife team Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes as Friday hosts in 2021.

But the pair have been plagued by rumours of a backstage feud, with claims they bicker and have struggled to “hit it off”.

In June a spokesperson for the show sought to address the reports, claiming the two have become friends.

“Despite the challenges of starting their on-screen partnership during a pandemic, Alison and Dermot have developed a firm friendship and their chemistry has proved a ratings success,” the show’s spokesperson said.

"Since the pandemic ended, the pair are now able to enjoy socialising together post the show and have enjoyed spending time with each other's families too."

‘Tone deaf’ segment

Oscars chef Wolfgang Puck caused outrage on the show with an extravagant pizza recipe – which included a caviar topping.

Holly and Phil tucked into the lavish pizza, which Puck explained he served it with "a glass of champagne or a Martini” at the annual Academy Awards ceremony.

But some viewers branded the segment "out of touch" as the cost of living crisis continues to impact people across the country.

One fumed: "Really proves how out of touch this show is, cook a pizza with salmon and caviar, then kick back with some champagne brought to you by the butler and throw money as the peasants walk by your house." 

Another added: "Seriously, caviar! Who can afford that these days? Totally out of step with most of the country and your viewers. #ThisMorning." 

Food bank row

In a similar row, the ITV programme was forced to scrap a Spin to Win prize which gave callers the chance to clear their energy bills – which viewers dubbed ‘tone deaf’ given the current cost of living crisis.

The show was hit with hundreds of Ofcom complaints after adding the prize to the wheel, earlier this month.

The same week they were accused of getting it wrong again after promoting their £100,000 prize draw during a segment being filmed at a food bank.

Presenter Craig Doyle was shown walking through a food warehouse in Northern Ireland, where he explained that they’d “been paying for people’ shopping”.

He interviewed worker Joel about the “hard times” that drove people to food banks.

He then turned to the camera to plug the competition saying: “To remind you though, £100,000 in tax-free cash. In this current climate, that is absolutely life-changing."

 TV critic Scott Bryan tweeted: “The way it went from 'its heat or eat' to 'for your chance to win £100,000' without even a pause…”

Another viewer tweeted: “How are they still getting this messaging wrong?" while another person wrote: "So out of touch" alongside a face-palm emoji.

Eamonn Holmes jibes

Former presenter Eamonn Holmes lashed out at ITV’s "lies" in July, as he collected a News Presenter of the Year gong at this year’s TRIC radio awards.

Eamonn and wife Ruth Langsford were brutally axed from This Morning last year after more than a decade on the show and he has taken aim at producers several times since.

He reignited the row at the ceremony at London’s Grosvenor House, calling their press office “The ministry of lies”.

"The point is I did not resign from ITV, ITV resigned from me, and I never received a single explanation once of why they wanted rid of me, so that was that," he said.

He also waded into the Holly and Phil queue-jumping row on his GB News breakfast show.

After guest Dawn Neesom suggested “everybody had come together” to pay their respects to the Queen, Eamonn commented: “Except not everyone came together.”

He then asked guest Christopher Biggins: “There’s been a lot of outrage at the ITV This Morning presenters, Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby, who went their separate ways, what do you think of the reaction to them?”

Biggins also replied that it was a “silly PR move” after “people had queued for hours and hours and hours.”

Producers for the ITV show said: "This Morning had press accreditation and like other media, Phillip and Holly were escorted to work from the press gallery by government staff.

"They did not file past The Queen's coffin… Any allegations of improper behaviour are categorically untrue."

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