Carol Vorderman claims Tories at top of the BBC forced her out

Carole Vorderman is now a presenter on radio station LBC
Carole Vorderman is now a presenter on radio station LBC - Instagram

Carol Vorderman has claimed that “Conservatives at the top of the BBC” forced her out.

The former Countdown star, now a political commentator, announced in November that she was leaving her BBC Radio Wales show because she could not abide by the corporation’s guidelines, which ask presenters to remain apolitical on social media.

In a new interview with the Radio Times, Vorderman said: “The people at the top of the BBC – Conservatives – are trying to restrict what people do in their private lives. It’s an absolute nonsense.”

Referring to her departure, Vorderman claimed: “They said, ‘Social media guidelines are such-and-such, you can’t say this, you’re not allowed to say that. You can’t do this. You can’t do that…’ So I tweeted out some stuff, knowing that I’d be in trouble for it.

“And, sure enough, absolutely no conversation to be had – sacked within 24 hours.”

She added: “You have to understand Ofcom rules when you’re on air, which I was abiding by. In fact, I had a light entertainment show. Showbiz gossip and chat, having a laugh and playing music. Nothing taxing. I never, ever spoke about politics.

“This kind of ownership of what you’re allowed to be outside of that is absolutely restricting the freedom of people.

“It’s not just me and it’s ironic, isn’t it, that I’m the only one that’s been sacked?”

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Gary Lineker has caused controversy on several occasions with his tweets about politics, but remains the BBC’s highest-paid star.

Vorderman is now a presenter on radio station LBC.

She said of her political persuasion: “I am politically independent. I vote for all parties other than the Conservatives.”

Elsewhere in the Radio Times, Fiona Bruce spoke of the difficulties of appearing politically neutral while hosting the BBC’s Question Time.

She said: “You’re walking a tightrope on Question Time, more than any programme I do, because I have no idea what anyone’s going to say, particularly when it comes to the audience.

“I have to respond to that in the right manner and if I get it wrong, social media does not hesitate to let me know about it.”

Bruce also discussed the content of the BBC’s Ten O’Clock News bulletin, saying that editors “leaven” the mix of war “so people don’t feel we’re all going to hell in a handcart”.

“The other night, for example, they had a piece at the end about a couple of guys who thought they saw the Northern Lights when it was the lights from a Premier Inn.”

The BBC has been contacted for comment.