TV's Fiona Phillips was Labour's first choice for by-election

Daily Echo: TV's Fiona Phillips was Labour's first choice for by-election TV's Fiona Phillips was Labour's first choice for by-election

SHE is best known as one of the most famous faces of breakfast television.

Southampton-born Fiona Phillips was accustomed to grilling top politicians as the presenter of hit ITV show GMTV for more than ten years. Now it has emerged that the broadcaster was Labour’s number one choice to contest the Eastleigh by-election.

The party’s candidate, John O’Farrell, continued his campaign yesterday, canvassing voters in the town alongside Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Rachel Reeves MP.

But agents from Billy Marsh Associates, the company that represents Ms Phillips, confirmed that Labour leader Ed Miliband contacted her personally about the role, before Mr O’Farrell won the party’s approval.

A Billy Marsh Associates spokesman said that the 52-yearold was approached by Mr Miliband in a bid to make her stand for the Eastleigh seat, but she rejected the offer.

Last night Ms Phillips, who is a Labour supporter, declined to make any further comment.

It is the second time the former Millbrook School pupil has turned down an offer from the Labour Party. She previously rebuffed an invitation from former Prime Minister Gordon Brown to become a health minister.

Labour last night issued a brief statement in response to the revelation, but refused to confirm the approach to Ms Phillips.

A party spokesman said: “Labour members in Eastleigh selected the best candidate from a very strong shortlist.”

That candidate was satirist Mr O’Farrell, who was caught in a political storm after claiming in a book that he wished former Tory Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher had died in an IRA bomb attack.

Ms Phillips was at the centre of controversy herself last year following remarks made on a return to her former school.

Ms Phillips was the guest speaker at the opening of the £16m Oasis Academy Lord’s Hill in Southampton.

But her comments about life at its predecessor, Millbrook School, which she attended in the 1970s, provoked a furious reaction in the city.

In her speech, Ms Phillips said: “I’m proud to say I went to Millbrook School.

I’m not proud of the education I had there.”

She went on to claim that it was a “school rampant with hormones and no discipline”, which turned her into a “vile teenager”.

 

Comments (19)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

8:13am Wed 20 Feb 13

Tenderhearts wife says...

Good for her I have a lot of respect for Fiona and she hasnt let herself be pushed into the Elections by the big guns. As far as her coments on Millbrook school goes She was just being honest about her experience of her time at the school and has no reflection of the performance of the school now. People are way too sensitive, they should acknowledge the positive fact that the school has improved rather than dwell on the fact it wasnt the best in the late 1970's.
Good for her I have a lot of respect for Fiona and she hasnt let herself be pushed into the Elections by the big guns. As far as her coments on Millbrook school goes She was just being honest about her experience of her time at the school and has no reflection of the performance of the school now. People are way too sensitive, they should acknowledge the positive fact that the school has improved rather than dwell on the fact it wasnt the best in the late 1970's. Tenderhearts wife
  • Score: 0

8:15am Wed 20 Feb 13

SPIKEISLANDTRADER says...

Maybe a blonde , but with brains , Well done Fiona
Maybe a blonde , but with brains , Well done Fiona SPIKEISLANDTRADER
  • Score: 1

8:27am Wed 20 Feb 13

CharlieOxbridge says...

Did Labour just go round asking C list celebrities? Pathetic
Did Labour just go round asking C list celebrities? Pathetic CharlieOxbridge
  • Score: -1

8:31am Wed 20 Feb 13

MGRA says...

she is as dumb as a waiter on a rope...... John O'Farrell will get slaughtered at the polls but she would have been humiliated.....
she is as dumb as a waiter on a rope...... John O'Farrell will get slaughtered at the polls but she would have been humiliated..... MGRA
  • Score: -1

8:43am Wed 20 Feb 13

Datarater says...

Being Labour we don't expect her to have many brains. We expect Labour people to be emotionally driven.
Being Labour we don't expect her to have many brains. We expect Labour people to be emotionally driven. Datarater
  • Score: -1

9:20am Wed 20 Feb 13

griffon says...

Hm politics 'show biz for ugly people' so why not politics for show biz people.
Hm politics 'show biz for ugly people' so why not politics for show biz people. griffon
  • Score: -1

9:40am Wed 20 Feb 13

The Wickham Man says...

At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.
At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate. The Wickham Man
  • Score: -1

9:50am Wed 20 Feb 13

derek james says...

another champagne socialist!
another champagne socialist! derek james
  • Score: 0

9:54am Wed 20 Feb 13

Linesman says...

The Wickham Man wrote:
At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.
I bet that you wish that you could be a failure like her.
[quote][p][bold]The Wickham Man[/bold] wrote: At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.[/p][/quote]I bet that you wish that you could be a failure like her. Linesman
  • Score: 1

10:13am Wed 20 Feb 13

Lone Ranger. says...

The Wickham Man wrote:
At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.
Blimey ....... Where have you been for the last 2.5 years
[quote][p][bold]The Wickham Man[/bold] wrote: At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.[/p][/quote]Blimey ....... Where have you been for the last 2.5 years Lone Ranger.
  • Score: 1

10:40am Wed 20 Feb 13

southy says...

derek james wrote:
another champagne socialist!
It shows that Labour is just another Capitalist supporting Right Wing Party.
No interest for the majority any more and doing what the Torys do best look after the few those that see you all right with a high paying job, and put large amounts of money in the Torys funds
[quote][p][bold]derek james[/bold] wrote: another champagne socialist![/p][/quote]It shows that Labour is just another Capitalist supporting Right Wing Party. No interest for the majority any more and doing what the Torys do best look after the few those that see you all right with a high paying job, and put large amounts of money in the Torys funds southy
  • Score: -1

10:43am Wed 20 Feb 13

southy says...

A party spokesman said: “Labour members in Eastleigh selected the best candidate from a very strong shortlist.”

But left off the list the best people for the job
A party spokesman said: “Labour members in Eastleigh selected the best candidate from a very strong shortlist.” But left off the list the best people for the job southy
  • Score: 0

12:25pm Wed 20 Feb 13

Lockssmart says...

I've got one of her electric razors and its brilliant.
I've got one of her electric razors and its brilliant. Lockssmart
  • Score: -1

12:30pm Wed 20 Feb 13

kingnotail says...

The Wickham Man wrote:
At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.
All she did was point out attitudes that still persist today - kids from working class backgrounds shouldn't have ambitions beyond their station. It was like this when I was at school, so what exactly has she done wrong?
[quote][p][bold]The Wickham Man[/bold] wrote: At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.[/p][/quote]All she did was point out attitudes that still persist today - kids from working class backgrounds shouldn't have ambitions beyond their station. It was like this when I was at school, so what exactly has she done wrong? kingnotail
  • Score: -1

12:45pm Wed 20 Feb 13

George4th says...

The Wickham Man wrote:
At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.
Spot on!
>

13 years of Labour = ruination!

The young and future generations robbed of a decent future at the altar of the Labour god, "SPEND"

At least Milliband et al have s l o w l y admitted that their predecessors got it all wrong!!!!!!!! So that's ok then! Doh!
[quote][p][bold]The Wickham Man[/bold] wrote: At Millbrook school she blamed everyone but herself for her own failure. This makes her ideally qualified as a labour candidate.[/p][/quote]Spot on! > 13 years of Labour = ruination! The young and future generations robbed of a decent future at the altar of the Labour god, "SPEND" At least Milliband et al have s l o w l y admitted that their predecessors got it all wrong!!!!!!!! So that's ok then! Doh! George4th
  • Score: -1

1:12pm Wed 20 Feb 13

Stephen J says...

southy wrote:
A party spokesman said: “Labour members in Eastleigh selected the best candidate from a very strong shortlist.”

But left off the list the best people for the job
If Daz Procter was the TUSC's best person for the job, I can't imagine what those who didn't make it are like. From what I've seen, he's obviously a 'true believer' but he's completely hopeless at putting it across. And he reckons he can represent the people of Eastleigh in the House of Commons with those communication skills? Another example of the TUSC not having a clue what being an MP is actually all about.
[quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: A party spokesman said: “Labour members in Eastleigh selected the best candidate from a very strong shortlist.” But left off the list the best people for the job[/p][/quote]If Daz Procter was the TUSC's best person for the job, I can't imagine what those who didn't make it are like. From what I've seen, he's obviously a 'true believer' but he's completely hopeless at putting it across. And he reckons he can represent the people of Eastleigh in the House of Commons with those communication skills? Another example of the TUSC not having a clue what being an MP is actually all about. Stephen J
  • Score: -1

1:12pm Wed 20 Feb 13

sarfhamton says...

Thank goodness for that, a terrible woman and thick to boot
Thank goodness for that, a terrible woman and thick to boot sarfhamton
  • Score: -1

2:12pm Wed 20 Feb 13

Tenderhearts wife says...

sarfhamton wrote:
Thank goodness for that, a terrible woman and thick to boot
what makes her so terrible, the fact that she is a woman? or perhaps she's not very good at being a woman? She didnt ask to be approached to run in the Elections, she's not pretending to be something that she isnt as most politicians do, she turned the opportunity down. As for being thick im sure that she knows how to spell Southampton!
[quote][p][bold]sarfhamton[/bold] wrote: Thank goodness for that, a terrible woman and thick to boot[/p][/quote]what makes her so terrible, the fact that she is a woman? or perhaps she's not very good at being a woman? She didnt ask to be approached to run in the Elections, she's not pretending to be something that she isnt as most politicians do, she turned the opportunity down. As for being thick im sure that she knows how to spell Southampton! Tenderhearts wife
  • Score: 1

7:11pm Wed 20 Feb 13

100%HANTSBOY says...

southy wrote:
derek james wrote:
another champagne socialist!
It shows that Labour is just another Capitalist supporting Right Wing Party.
No interest for the majority any more and doing what the Torys do best look after the few those that see you all right with a high paying job, and put large amounts of money in the Torys funds
Perhaps you could offer her a position with your party,obviously on minimum wage!
[quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]derek james[/bold] wrote: another champagne socialist![/p][/quote]It shows that Labour is just another Capitalist supporting Right Wing Party. No interest for the majority any more and doing what the Torys do best look after the few those that see you all right with a high paying job, and put large amounts of money in the Torys funds[/p][/quote]Perhaps you could offer her a position with your party,obviously on minimum wage! 100%HANTSBOY
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree