News, Culture & Society

Good Morning Britain loses 500,000 viewers after Piers Morgan quit

Tens of thousands sign petitions demanding ITV brings Piers back

  • A petition launched after Piers quit GMB, found here, said the popular host had been treated ‘appallingly.’  
  • A second petition titled ‘Keep Piers Morgan on GMB for his common sense approach to life’ seen here.
  • Another set up to ‘Save Piers Morgan from being sacked from GMB’, said any decision to remove him from the show would be ‘an absolute farce.’ It can be found by clicking here. 

Good Morning Britain has lost 500,000 viewers since Piers Morgan quit the show on Tuesday.

The 55-year-old left the daytime series after backlash over comments he made following Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s controversial interview with Oprah Winfrey.

Piers had dismissed Meghan’s account of suffering suicidal thoughts and experiencing racism at the hands of the royal family as he insisted he ‘didn’t believe a word’. 

The outspoken GMB host then walked off set after a fierce debate with colleague Alex Beresford. 

Piers, who refused to apologise, later announced his resignation and tweeted his thanks to the GMB team, praising them for their ‘hard work and dedication’ that led to them beating their main breakfast TV rival.

He wrote: ‘I had one goal when I joined GMB – beat BBC Breakfast in the ratings. 

‘On my last day, we did it.’

Good Morning Britain had managed to beat BBC Breakfast ratings for the first time in history with 1.89 million people tuning in to watch Piers and co-host Susanna Reid present the news.

But since the controversial host announced his permanent departure the show’s ratings plummeted to 1.7 million before falling again to 1.4 million. 

Shares in ITV also plunged in the wake of his resignation with almost £200million wiped off the company’s value overnight and share prices dropping by 3.8 per cent.

Meanwhile, signatures on three petitions calling for Piers to be reinstated on Good Morning Britain have now reached more than 227,000.  

Good Morning Britain has lost 500,000 viewers since Piers Morgan (pictured alongside co-host Susanna Reid) quit the show on Tuesday 

Piers resigned from the daytime show after an on-air row with colleague Alex Beresford who criticised him for ‘continuing to trash’ the Duchess of Sussex.

There were more than 41,000 complaints received by Ofcom, the UK’s communications regulator, including one from Meghan herself following the clash.

The duchess is said to have raised concerns with ITV about the effect Piers’s comments may have on the issue of mental health generally and those attempting to deal with their own problems. 

But Piers later repeated his condemnation of her interview the following day when he told reporters outside his West London home: ‘If I have to fall on my sword for expressing an honestly held opinion about Meghan Markle and that diatribe of bilge that she came out with in that interview, so be it.’  

 

Piers, who refused to apologise, later tweeted that GMB had beaten ratings for BBC Breakfast in the ratings on his final day

Piers, who refused to apologise, later tweeted that GMB had beaten ratings for BBC Breakfast in the ratings on his final day

Investors mulled what his departure could mean for ITV as shares in the broadcaster’s shares plunged by as much as 6 per cent in the wake of his departure.

The stock finally closed down 3.8 per cent – wiping £193million off ITV’s market value.

The commercial broadcaster, which makes most of its money from advertising and producing television programmes, was valued at about £4.9billion on Thursday.

Ed Cropley, a financial commentator at Reuters, said the shares drop suggested Piers’s exit could cost tens of millions of pounds in lost ad sales and that ITV ‘can’t take his departure likely’. 

The 55-year-old left the daytime series following backlash over comments he made about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's controversial interview with Oprah Winfrey (pictured)

The 55-year-old left the daytime series following backlash over comments he made about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s controversial interview with Oprah Winfrey (pictured)

Piers Morgan ‘to stay at ITV’

Sources at ITV have said that Piers ‘will continue to make programmes for the channel’, according to iNews.

This is likely to include his popular celebrity interview programme, Life Stories, which has been on air since 2009.

It comes as signatures on three petitions calling for Piers to be reinstated on Good Morning Britain have now reached more than 227,000. 

One petition, called ‘Bring Back Piers Morgan!’, accused ITV of treating him ‘appallingly’ and has so far garnered 40,500 supporters. 

It claimed: ‘How ITV have treated Piers Morgan after he saved one of their failing shows is appalling.

‘They have thrown him under the bus and allowed him to be bullied by an colleague on air. Piers has turned the show into the most talked about show on ITV.

‘He was the only person who spoke on behalf of viewers during the pandemic and now he’s been bullied by the snowflakes all for speaking the truth.

‘BRING PIERS BACK ITV.’

Another, ‘Keep Piers Morgan on GMB for his common sense approach to life’, which now has more than 143,400 signatures, states: ‘He’s not afraid to speak out and says what a lot of us are thinking.’

A third, Save Piers Morgan from being sacked from GMB, which has been signed by more than 45,100 people, describes his departure as ‘an absolute farce’. 

Piers resigned from the daytime show after an on-air row with colleague Alex Beresford who criticised him for 'continuing to trash' the Duchess of Sussex

Piers resigned from the daytime show after an on-air row with colleague Alex Beresford who criticised him for ‘continuing to trash’ the Duchess of Sussex

It reads: ‘This man has stuck by our NHS when many others didn’t care including our government.

‘He confronts the politicians on questions many of us want answering. He sponsored sir captain Tom £10000 to start him off to support our NHS.

‘Please sign this petition and share it on, give him the support that he has given us as NHS workers.’

The total number of signatures for the three polls is now more than 227,000. 

But Piers, who had been on the show for five years, recently responded to the soaring petitions on Twitter by writing that although the support came as a ‘pleasant surprise’ he will not be returning to GMB.

He said: ‘I won’t be going back, but thanks to everyone who has signed these petitions. Normally, people start petitions to have me fired or deported, so this is a pleasant surprise.’

In a 332-word statement shared on Instagram yesterday the tough-talking journalist thanked his supporters and declared he was ‘willing to stand my ground’. 

 

In a 332-word statement shared on Instagram yesterday, the tough-talking journalist thanked his supporters and declared he was 'willing to stand my ground'

In a 332-word statement shared on Instagram yesterday, the tough-talking journalist thanked his supporters and declared he was ‘willing to stand my ground’ 

He wrote: ‘To all my supporters, I just wanted to drop you a note of thanks. (To all my haters, whatever.) 

‘It has been an extraordinary week for me, for Britain, for our monarchy and for our future. 

‘Those of you that know me well enough know that, despite my many faults, I’m always willing to stand my ground for the things that I think matter most. 

‘My fervent opposition to the Iraq War led to my demise from the Daily Mirror. My outspoken views on the insanity of American gun laws led to the end of my time at CNN. 

‘And now I’ve lost my job at Good Morning Britain because I chose not to apologise for disbelieving Meghan Markle’s claims in her interview with Oprah Winfrey.’ 

He added: ‘I thus became the latest ”victim” of the cancel culture that is permeating our country, every minute, of every hour, of everyday. Though of course, I consider myself to be neither a victim, nor actually cancelled.

‘However, I do believe the defence of free speech and the right to express honestly held opinions, is the most important issue of my career, and the most important issue in British society.’

Sources at ITV have said that Piers ‘will continue to make programmes for the channel’, according to iNews.

This is likely to include his popular celebrity interview programme, Life Stories, which has been on air since 2009. 

‘Defence of free speech is most important issue in British society.’: Piers Morgan’s letter in full  

Hi everyone.

To all my supporters, I just wanted to drop you a note of thanks. (To all my haters, whatever.) It has been an extraordinary week for me, for Britain, for our monarchy and for our future. Those of you that know me well enough know that, despite my many faults, I’m always willing to stand my ground for the things that I think matter most. 

My fervent opposition to the Iraq War led to my demise from the Daily Mirror. My outspoken views on the insanity of American gun laws led to the end of my time at CNN. And now I’ve lost my job at Good Morning Britain because I chose not to apologise for disbelieving Meghan Markle’s claims in her interview with Oprah Winfrey. I thus became the latest ‘victim’ of the cancel culture that is permeating our country, every minute, of every hour, of everyday. Though of course, I consider myself to be neither a victim, nor actually cancelled.

However, I do believe the defence of free speech and the right to express honestly held opinions, is the most important issue of my career, and the most important issue in British society.

If you’d like to show your support for me, please order a copy of my book Wake Up on Amazon. It’s less than a tenner, and I didn’t write it to make more money but because the very foundations of democracy, built upon freedom of expression, freedom of thought and freedom of speech, are under attack like never before and must be defended. It is a privilege to live in a democracy, and it is a privilege to be British. As I said when I left GMB, the right to free speech is a hill worth dying on. So, have a read, and if you like it, give it to one of your friends.

This is not simply an act of defiance, but a commitment to our collective futures.

Kind regards,

Piers

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk