ITV announces external review over Phillip Schofield’s departure from This Morning

ITV has instructed a barrister to carry out an external review of the facts following Phillip Schofield’s statement and departure from This Morning, chief executive Dame Carolyn McCall has said.

In a letter seen by the PA news agency, ITV’s Dame McCall said: “You will have seen the significant media coverage concerning Phillip Schofield.

“As you would expect we take the matter extremely seriously and have reviewed our own records over the weekend.

“Given the ongoing rumours, we continued to ask questions of both parties, who both continued to deny the rumours, including as recently as this month.

Phillip Schofield: Timeline of ITV departure after colleague affair

“There has been a lot of inaccuracy in the reporting so I thought it would be useful to set out some facts.”

The letter was sent to Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer, DCMS Committee chair Dame Caroline Dinenage and Ofcom chief executive Dame Melanie Dawes.

More on Phillip Schofield

Schofield has said he had an “unwise but not illegal” relationship with a younger colleague.

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Former presenter of This Morning claims there was ‘total cover-up’ over Phillip Schofield’s affair with younger man.

The letter says ITV have offered him support “throughout this period” and are still doing so.

Schofield resigned from the broadcaster on Friday after admitting both to the affair and lying about it. He was also dropped by his talent agency, YMU.

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The relationship took place while the 61-year-old was still married to Stephanie Lowe, and before he publicly came out as gay.

The letter goes on to say that ITV has instructed Jane Mulcahy KC, of Blackstone Chambers, to “carry out an external review to establish the facts.”

Image: Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield

“She will review our records and talk to people involved. This work will also consider our relevant processes and policies and whether we need to change or strengthen any,” the letter said.

ITV bosses are set to be quizzed by MPs over their handling of the situation at This Morning next week.

The network’s executives will appear before the Commons Culture, Media and Sports Committee on Tuesday.

They had been scheduled to appear before the committee anyway, to discuss the draft Media Bill, but have been told to expect an interrogation over the Schofield affair as well.

Source : Sky News