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Manchester Evening News
Manchester Evening News
Jessica Sansome

ITV This Morning viewers 'feel awkward' as pregnant Ferne McCann breaks down in tears in first appearance since voice note drama

This Morning viewers admitted to feeling 'awkward' as Ferne McCann broke down in tears discussing her recent 'voice note' drama for the first time. The former The Only Way is Essex star hit the headlines back in November 2022 after an anonymous Instagram account posted a series of voice messages from a woman they claimed was Ferne.

The audio messages reportedly featured the 32-year-old talking about the victims of her ex Arthur Collins, who was given a 20-year jail sentence in December 2017 for carrying out an acid attack in a packed nightclub. Sixteen people suffered chemical burn injuries and three people were temporarily blinded in the attack.

Also in November, Ferne apologised to acid attack victim Sophie Hall after claiming voice messages leaked online were "manipulated and edited". The reality TV star said she felt she had “no choice” but to address the audio messages in which she allegedly called Ms Hall ugly and stupid.

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In a statement released on Instagram at the time, Ferne wrote: "I am aware that people will have a number of questions about the voice messages being put into the public domain and purportedly sent by me.

"Most importantly I want to apologise to all the victims of Arthur Collins abhorrent actions in 2017 that they have to relive that night and the pain that followed because this matter is again in the public domain. In particular I want to apologise to Sophie Hall. I do not believe her to be ugly or stupid. She has been brave beyond belief. Arthur Collins' crimes created genuine victims so I am not trying to portray myself as one."

Ferne said she was unable to elaborate on details because there are "important and significant" legal proceedings preventing her from “setting the record straight at this stage”. However, Ferne appeared on This Morning on Wednesday (March 15) ahead of the return of her ITVBe series, Ferne McCann: First Time Mum, in which she addresses the voice notes, which are also reported to have included comments about former co-star and friend Samantha Faires.

As Ferne, who is pregnant with her second child, appeared on the ITV daytime show to chat with hosts Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield, a clip was shown from her new series which documented the breaking of the scandal and its aftermath. As the cameras returned to the studio, Ferne was seen wiping tears on her sleeve as Phillip, 60, rushed up to offer her a tissue.

Holly and Phillip helped Ferne along as she became emotional on the ITV show (ITV)

"It's hard to watch... Oh darling." Holly, 42, added as she spoke about reality TV capturing these personal moments. Ferne said: "I wear my heart on my sleeve and I like to be transparent with my viewers. I have to let the cameras and it really is warts and all. I can't just not include the difficult times." She went on to describe the incident as not her 'finest hour' and said revealed she had attempted to contact those hurt by the incident.

"It wasn't my finest hour, it was a difficult time of my life. I need to take this opportunity again to apologise publicly again, and I have reached out to those people, but it is a criminal investigation so I can't say too much." She continued: "The voice notes were from a time when I was in a very vulnerable situation about six years ago, I have been in therapy for six years since, I am a different person."

Watching the interview unfold at home, some This Morning viewers felt uncomfortable and criticised the show for 'giving Ferne a platform'. @ashers1157 tweeted: "Naaaaa. Why give her the platform, literally make me feel awkward #thismorning." @rain8ows commented: "I get everyone makes mistakes, but is it not a bit much that she's been given a tearful interview and a new series to promote after this #ThisMorning."

But @KatieYoud shared: "Can’t help but feel sorry for @fernemccann she looks so emotional sat on the This Morning sofa. I actually really like her! #ThisMorning." @Ruthyrooroo added: "@fernemccannI thought the [person] who leaked those messages was the real villain in all this. No, not your finest hour, but we’ve all said things in private that we probably shouldn’t have. Chin up and congrats on the pregnancy. #ThisMorning."

The Manchester Evening News has contacted representatives for ITV and This Morning for comment.


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