ITV Boss Admits ‘Queuegate’ Has Hit Holly Willoughby And Phillip Schofield 'Hard'

"It is really horrible for them. I don’t think they’re feeling great."

ITV’s chief executive has spoken out about the accusations that Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield jumped the queue for the Queen’s lying-in-state, admitting the reaction had been ”horrible for them”.

Despite insisting they “would never jump a queue” and were given permission to attend to make a piece for This Morning “like hundreds of accredited broadcasters and journalists”, there has been continued conversation around the topic.

In an interview with the BBC, Dame Carolyn McCall insisted the pair did nothing wrong and were “of course” safe in their jobs presenting the ITV daytime show.

She added that the reaction in the press and on social media showed “how misinformation just spreads, and it is really horrible for them”.

Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby
Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby
Ken McKayKen McKay/ITV/Shutterstock

“I don’t think they’re feeling great. I mean, it’s hard,” she said.

“Imagine yourself in the eye of a storm like this, where you’re trying to say you’ve done nothing wrong, and all the noise around you is saying that you have. It’s difficult to handle.”

Some media and MPs had been able to bypass the queue and access Westminster Hall to see the Queen lying in state, while members of the public queued for many hours to get inside.

Holly and Phillip inside Westminster Hall
Holly and Phillip inside Westminster Hall

“They did have accreditation,” Dame Carolyn added of Holly and Phil. “Lots of people say they didn’t.

“They were sent by This Morning to do a piece for 20 September, which ran. They were to interview people inside and outside. They didn’t displace anyone in the queue. And actually, they’ve been very misrepresented.”

Those taking aim at them included Domino’s Pizza, which put out a tweet saying: “Apologies to anyone waiting on their pizza, we’ve just received an order from Holly and Phil.”

Dame Carolyn said ITV spoke to Domino’s, which advertises on the broadcaster’s channels. “We just said to them, ‘What are you doing?’

“They said, ‘We think it’s really funny, don’t you?’ We said, ‘No.’ They didn’t think of the impact that would have on how people would pick that up and start memeing it, and that’s what happens with these things.

“They did not do anything wrong.”

Dame Carolyn was speaking at the Royal Television Society London Convention, in an interview with BBC media editor Amol Rajan.


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