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Fern Britton takes swipe at ex-This Morning co-host Phillip Schofield on Celebrity Big Brother

Fern Britton takes swipe at ex-This Morning co-host Phillip Schofield on Celebrity Big Brother

Fern Britton has alluded to her rivalry with former This Morning colleague Phillip Schofield on Celebrity Big Brother.

The reality show has returned for its first all-star run since ITV rebooted the series, and Britton is one of the housemates alongside X Factor judge Louis Walsh – who has already shocked viewers with an “incredibly rude” comment, Love Island winner Ekin-Su and Kate Middleton’s uncle. Gary Goldsmith

Since the series launched on Monday (3 March), the celebrities have not held back from sharing their straight-shooting opinions, with Sharon Osbourne sharing candid views on James Corden and Ellen DeGeneres.

Britton, who hosted ITV daytime series This Morning from 1999 to 2009, followed suit after saying that she “might have to leave” the house if Schofield entered the house as a surprise housemate.

When Goldsmith said he thought the host, who dramatically quit the series in May 2023 after admitting to lying about an affair with a younger male colleague, might be a late entrant in the house, Britton looked alarmed.

She replied: “That didn’t happen – yet, Maybe he’s coming in as a surprise? I might have to leave at that point.”

When prompted to reveal her true feelings on This Morning, whose behind-the-scenes tensions made headlines in 2023, Britton continued: “Genuinely, I haven’t been there for 15 years – I got off the train and it’s way over the horizon now, so I honestly don’t know.

“I can’t say anything. It was tricky at times. I think Ben [Shephard] and Cat [Deeley] are going to do a great job.”

Britton presented This Morning alongside Schofield, who dramatically quit the series in May 2023 after admitting to lying about an affair with a younger male colleague.

During their working relationship, Britton clashed with Schofield, with the latter revealing in his 2012 memoir Life is What You Make It that Britton once accused him of “meddling” with the daytime show’s content, forcing him to “calmly” tell her: “Please don’t do that to me again.”

Fern Britton has signed up to ‘Celebrity Big Brother’ (Getty Images)
Fern Britton has signed up to ‘Celebrity Big Brother’ (Getty Images)

When Britton quit the show, being replaced by Holly Willoughby, she released a statement addressing the show’s team in general – but did not specifically name Schofield.

Schofield also claimed in his book that their previous row “was the point she decided she didn’t want” to be on the show any more.

In 2013, Schofield told Heat that he and Britton are “not really” in touch any more, with Brittontelling MailOnline: “Like Morecambe and Wise, we chose not to live in each other’s pockets. We were a great professional partnership but we never went on holiday together.”

Rumours of a rivalry between the pair resurfaced when, during This Morning’s 30th anniversary episode, the latter claimed she wasn’t invited to a ceremony honouring the series.

“Congrats on the Bafta,” she said, adding: “That was absolutely wonderful and brilliant. I would have loved to have been there but I didn’t get an invitation.”

Fern Britton and Phillip Schofield hosted ‘This Morning’ together (Getty Images)
Fern Britton and Phillip Schofield hosted ‘This Morning’ together (Getty Images)

When Schofield pointed out that she was on stage in Scotland at the time of the event, Britton replied: “I wasn’t on Monday night – I would have come but I wasn’t invited.” Schofield told his social media followers that Britton had “memory loss” and would have been welcome to attend.

Celebrity Big Brother, hosted by AJ Odudu and Will Best, airs on ITV1 and ITVX nightly.