MPs to 'get answers from ITV bosses' over Phillip Schofield saga

Cabinet minister Mel Stride said there are "certainly questions to examine" over the accusations thrown at ITV following Phillip Schofield's exit

ITV bosses are set to be quizzed over the handling of Phillip Schofield's departure from This Morning next week.

The former This Morning co-host, 61, has been at the centre of a scandal after confirming an affair with a younger male colleague and instigating an onslaught of accusations of "toxicity" on the programme from former stars.

Eamonn Holmes said Schofield "created atmosphere where people hated him" and the TV doctor Ranj Singh said he felt "managed out" after claiming he tried to voice his concerns about the culture at This Morning with people at the top of ITV.

On Tuesday, a session with TV executives, including from ITV, Channel 4, and Channel 5, is expected to focus on scrutiny of the forthcoming Media Bill.

But Schofield's resignation and the following accusations could also be raised at the meeting next week.

John Nicolson is on the Culture, Media and Sport committee. Credit: PA

The SNP's Shadow Culture Secretary John Nicolson - a committee member - tweeted about the "cause for concern" at ITV.

"The issues erupting around ITV have been a cause for concern," he wrote.

"I look forward to getting some answers from ITV bosses."

The committee is made up of 11 MPs, including Tories Simon Jupp and Dame Caroline Dinenage, and Labour's Julie Elliott and Dr Rupa Huq.

Holmes, who said he was “tossed out the door” when he was given the boot from ITV, alleged there was a “total cover-up” on This Morning over Schofield’s affair.

He told Dan Wootton’s GB News show on Monday morning: “Those in authority had to know what was going on and they thought they would dodge a bullet with this...

“And you simply sit there and think, ‘No, mate. You’ve had it all your way for too long’.”

In an Instagram post earlier on Monday, Schofield hit back at his critics, saying there was “no toxicity” on This Morning.

He added: “I hope you have noticed that it’s the same handful of people with a grudge against me or the show who seem to have the loudest voice.”

Holmes responded: “I think that Phillip is absolutely right about toxicity.

“But, my friend, the toxicity is not with me, Dan Wootton, or anyone else. The toxicity is with you.

Eamonn Holmes has claimed there was 'a total cover-up' of Schofield's affair on This Morning. Credit: PA

“This nonsense that he wrote today about toxicity, about how (This Morning) is a happy place or whatever, holy God, what planet does this man live on?

“He created an atmosphere where people hated him."

On Saturday, an ITV spokesperson said: “Further to our statement last night, 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.

“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 yesterday reveals that he lied to people at ITV, from senior management to fellow presenters, to YMU, to the media and to others over this relationship.”

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