Carol McGiffin has slammed ITV as ‘cut-throat and ruthless’ amid the Phillip Schofield scandal at This Morning.
The former Loose Women presenter, 63, – who quit the show last month after it feeling it had become to ‘woke’ – said that the ‘ITV daytime family’ was ‘about as dysfunctional as they come’.
It comes as allegations of a ‘toxic’ environment behind the scenes at ITV have emerged with the likes of Eammon Holmes and Dr Ranj making accusations.
Carol also recently claimed a runner on her show was sacked to make room for Phillip’s ‘much younger’ lover.
A host of ITV staff members have spoken out after Schofield admitted that he engaged in an extramarital relationship with a young staff member on This Morning – who moved to Loose Women after the fling.
Phillip has now quit the show and is no longer on speaking terms with his former co-star Holly Willoughby who has claimed he lied to her about the affair.
Having her say: Carol McGiffin has slammed ITV as ‘cut-throat and ruthless’ amid the Phillip Schofield drama at This Morning
Difficult: A host of ITV staff members have spoken out after Schofield admitted that he engaged in an extramarital relationship with a young staff member on This Morning
Speaking to Best magazine Carol has now said: ‘They go on about the ‘ITV Daytime Family’ being cosy best mates, all caring and kind, but in my opinion it’s about as dysfunctional as they come.
‘It’s cut-throat, competitive and ruthless, and can be quite unpleasant, and as soon as your face doesn’t fit anymore, or you disagree with their narrative, you’re out the door.’
Carol recently claimed a runner on her show was sacked to make room for Phillip’s ‘much younger’ lover.
A host of ITV staff members have spoken out after Schofield admitted that he engaged in an extramarital relationship with a young runner on This Morning – who moved to Loose Women after the fling.
After it was alleged that Schofield’s lover was moved to another programme to ‘sort a problem’ the presenter insisted this wasn’t the case, saying it is ‘categorically untrue’ that he had anything to do with the move and that the runner had applied for the role and got it on his own merit.
McGiffin offered her take on the move when she appeared on GB News.
Speaking about the Loose Women runner who was replaced by Schofield’s lover, she said: ‘Everybody was really quite upset about it because you know everybody loved him and he was a great runner…
Tough: Phillip has now quit the show and is no longer on speaking terms with his former co-star Holly Willoughby who has claimed he lied to her about the affair
Speaking out: Carol also recently claimed a runner on her show was sacked to make room for Phillips’s ‘much younger’ lover
Strong words: Carol also claimed that none of the Loose Women panel like Phillip as she reacted to the presenter breaking his silence on his affair
‘One day I got a text message and it was from the young man in question and he said ‘I’m the new productions secretary at Loose Women’.
‘I thought, ‘hang on a minute what’s happened here’. I didn’t even know that he had gone at the time. He was a great guy [and then] he disappeared.’
Carol also claimed that none of the Loose Women panel like Phillip as she reacted to the presenter breaking his silence on his affair.
She heaped criticism on the ex-This Morning presenter, 61, as she spoke to Dan Wootton on GB News last week.
Her comments came just hours after Schofield said he was ‘broken and ashamed’, but in his first interview since admitting an affair he claimed he did not groom his colleague.
Schofield resigned from ITV last week and was dropped by his agency YMU after admitting to an ‘unwise, but not illegal’ affair with a younger male colleague.
Reacting to his first interview since the news, Ms McGiffin claimed that none of the Loose Women panel liked him, and said no one has said ‘a good word’ about him.
‘I don’t know anybody who’s actually ever said out loud that they really like Phillip,’ she said.
‘I don’t think he was liked by any of the Loose Women, I never heard anybody there say that they actually like him and no one ever really had a good word for him.’
This Morning always features a segment with the Loose Women panel before they hand over to the show on ITV, and Carol claimed Schofield always made it ‘uncomfortable’ because he was ‘dismissive’.
She also alleged that a runner on Loose Women was let go from his role when Schofield’s lover was promoted to a new position on the show from This Morning.
The ‘unprecedented’ move is said to have left several members of the Loose Women panel ‘uncomfortable’, and Ms McGiffin has now spoken about those claims.
The presenter, who was recently forced to quit Loose Women, said: ‘Everybody was really quite upset about it because everybody loved him. And he was a great runner.
‘I got a text message and it was from the young man in question. And he said, I’m the new production secretary at Loose Women. I thought, “Hang on a minute. What’s happened here?”‘
She also alleged that Schofield was trying to ‘take the fall’ for bosses at ITV as she voiced her opinion that This Morning cannot carry on, even without him, and should be axed.
She said: ‘I’m pretty certain that he’s trying to take the fall for them all. And the way I see it, they’re so arrogant. Most TV bosses are the same. They’re really arrogant.
‘They think they’re invincible and they just think, “Right, let’s just carry on, move along, put Holly [Willoughby] back on the show, let’s just get back to normal and everything will be all right, Phillip’s apologised and it’s all going to be okay” – but it’s not going to be okay.
‘I think genuinely that This Morning, this show can’t go on. I think it’s way too tainted.’
MailOnline has contacted ITV for comment.
Last week, an ITV spokesperson said: ‘ITV can confirm that when rumours of a relationship between Phillip Schofield and an employee of ITV first began to circulate in early 2020 ITV investigated.
‘Both parties were questioned and both categorically and repeatedly denied the rumours as did Phillip’s then agency YMU.
Tough: Schofield broke his silence last week by saying he’s ‘broken and ashamed’ but not a groomer in his first interview since admitting an affair
‘In addition, ITV spoke to a number of people who worked on This Morning and were not provided with, and did not find, any evidence of a relationship beyond hearsay and rumour.
‘Phillip’s statement reveals that he lied to people at ITV, from senior management to fellow presenters, to YMU [his management agency], to the media and to others over this relationship.’
Last month, Ms McGiffin was forced to quit Loose Women after a bizarre radio rant, including claiming the Covid pandemic was a World Health Organisation plot to take over every government.
She confirmed that she had left the lunchtime show, protesting that ITV insisted she sign a contract with clauses that were ‘totally unjust and unworkable’.
But The Mail on Sunday then disclosed that a free speech row was at the centre of her departure, after a backlash over her tirade in an interview on TNT Radio.
When did Phillip Schofield resign from This Morning?
Phillip Schofield’s fall from grace has been swift. The veteran TV star, who has admitted to an affair with a much younger male colleague while still married to his wife, has lost his high-profile job on This Morning, his lucrative contract with ITV and his talent representation.
This is a timeline of how events unfolded:
February 2020: Schofield comes out as gay after nearly 27 years of marriage to his wife Stephanie, in an emotional on-air chat with co-host and long-time friend Holly Willoughby. The pair embrace on the sofa.
September 2022: The co-hosts face criticism over claims they skipped the queue for the Queen’s Lying-in-State while attending as members of the media to film a segment for This Morning.
April 17 2023: The first hint something might be wrong comes in the first show after the Easter break. They should have both been on the sofa after Schofield took leave while he brother Timothy was on trial for child sex offences. While Schofield is back in the studio, Ms Willoughby is absent, saying she has shingles.
May 10: There are reports that the pair are ‘barely speaking’.
May 11: Schofield calls Ms Willoughby ‘his rock’ and says they are ‘the best of friends’.
May 15: The pair put on a united front on This Morning and make no reference to stories about their relationship.
May 18: Schofield presents what will turn out to be his last episode of This Morning.
May 20: Schofield steps down from This Morning with immediate effect. ITV says he will continue to present ‘peak-time shows’, including the British Soap Awards and a new prime-time series. Ms Willoughby releases a statement saying the This Morning sofa ‘won’t feel the same without him’.
May 21: It is announced that Dermot O’Leary and Alison Hammond will host the show on Monday May 22, as Willoughby takes early half-term leave. It is announced she will return to hosting duties on June 5.
May 22: O’Leary and Hammond host the show and hail Schofield as ‘one of the best live television broadcasters this country has ever had’.
May 26: Schofield admits to an ‘unwise but not illegal’ affair with a much younger male colleague and resigns from ITV. He confirms that the relationship began while he was still with his wife and says he will not be hosting the British Soap Awards. He apologises for lying about the relationship. He is dropped by his talent agency, YMU.
May 27: Ms Willoughby accuses Schofield of lying to her about the affair, saying his admission was ‘very hurtful’. ITV says the broadcaster was ‘not provided with, and did not find, any evidence of a relationship beyond hearsay and rumour’ when it looked into the matter in 2020.
May 28: Former This Morning resident doctor Dr Ranj Singh says the show is ‘toxic’, adding he raised concerns about ‘bullying and discrimination’ two years ago when he worked there and afterwards felt like he was ‘managed out’ for whistleblowing. ITV responds by saying an external and independent adviser was appointed to carry out a review after the complaint, which found ‘no evidence of bullying or discrimination’.
May 29: Schofield releases a statement denying ‘toxicity’ at This Morning and says ‘it’s the same handful of people with a grudge against me or the show who seem to have the loudest voice’. Former This Morning presenter Eamonn Holmes alleges there was a ‘total cover-up’ at ITV over the affair and says Ms Willoughby should follow Schofield ‘out the door’.
May 31: ITV’s chief executive Dame Carolyn McCall says the broadcaster has instructed a barrister to conduct an external review of how it has handled Schofield’s affair. She adds that Jane Mulcahy KC, of Blackstone Chambers, will ‘carry out an external review to establish the facts’.
June 1: Dame Carolyn has been summoned to give evidence to a parliamentary committee on June 14, to answer questions about the broadcaster’s approach to safeguarding and complaint handling following the departure of Schofield.
June 1: Schofield says he’s ‘broken and ashamed’ but not a groomer in first interview since he admitted affair with younger male colleague.
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