11/05/2017 10:27 BST

Loose Women's Anne Diamond Turned Down Bikini Photo-Shoot Due To Past Media 'Abuse'

'In the '80s, the media in this country felt it was absolutely OK to say the cruellest things.'

‘Loose Women’ panellist Anne Diamond has opened up about why she declined the opportunity to take part in the show’s recent swimwear photo-shoot.

The TV presenter has cited the press’s past harsh reporting around her appearance as her reason for turning down the offer, which eventually saw nine of the show’s regular stars stripping off in a bid to make other women feel more comfortable in their own bodies.

ITV Loose Women/Bryan Adams
The stars of 'Loose Women' in the #MyBodyMyStory photo-shoot

Anne shared her reasons in Wednesday’s (10 May) show. She explained: “It was an interesting message, what you were doing… you don’t have to say, ‘curvy is wonderful and I love all my flaws’, you were saying more, just ‘accept what you’ve got’.

“Because it’s your temple, you probably only live once, this is the body you’re living in, you’ll get over it… and I totally, totally get that. But I just think that there are some of us, who have been bullied for so long about their body image, that you can never quite do that.

“I could never be at a point where I could say ‘I’m totally OK with it’, enough to do that photograph. I couldn’t do it.”

Anne on 'Loose Women'

Outlining the “abuse” she received from the press about her weight earlier in her career, Anne continued: “To be famous in the 80s… when some of the media in this country felt it was absolutely OK to say the cruellest things and to send photographers out after you to deliberately try and catch you at off-guard moments.

“You used to dread going into the newsagent or into work - because I had to open the papers every morning to do my job, and see the most cruel headlines.

“One headline was ‘Anne Diamond is so fat her children must be ashamed of her’. And I remember thinking, ‘that is the most appalling thing to say’, and there were lots of other really cruel jibes. And you could get away with it then, I don’t think it’s quite so acceptable now.”

Anne tells her fellow presenters about the 'abuse' and 'bullying' she has endured in the press

Anne has opened up about her issues relating to her weight in the past, revealing while taking part in ‘Celebrity Fit Club’ in 2006 that she’d had a gastric band fitted, which garnered much attention in the press at the time.

Fellow panellist Martine McCutcheon also recently revealed she “wasn’t brave enough” to take part in the ‘Loose Women’ photo-shoot, while anchor Andrea McLean has also explained the absence of Ruth Langsford in the picture.

Other stars who declined to take part include Lisa Riley, Kaye Adams and Penny Lancaster.

‘Loose Women’ airs every weekday at 12.30pm on ITV.

Watch the full segment below: