Richard Madeley's GMB interview with climate activist hit with Ofcom complaints after viewers accuse him of 'bullying'

RICHARD Madeley's Good Morning Britain interview with a climate activist has been hit with Ofcom complaints after viewers accused him of "bullying".

The legendary presenter toughened up as he grilled Just Stop Oil protester Miranda Wheelan during a heated debate about petrol pump protests.

Richard, 65, kicked off the discussion by telling Miranda she had zero support from viewers after her group blocked supply chains and left millions of motorists scrambling for fuel.

The ITV show received 59 complaints as a result of the awkward interview on Monday, which saw Richard brand the group's slogan "childish" and compare Miranda to Little Britain character Vicky Pollard.

Miranda was told to "read the room" by journalist Lowri Turner, who said the protests were poorly timed after the coronavirus pandemic.

She then struggled not to cry after Richard also accused her of being a hypocrite for wearing clothes.

He said: "You'd accept wouldn't you that it's a very complicated discussion to be had? It's a very complicated thing and this 'just stop oil' slogan is very playground-ish, it's very Vicky Pollard, it's quite childish.

"'Just stop oil', I mean come on, there's more to say than that isn't there?" Richard then added.

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Miranda was shocked by his remark, and replied: "I would say that the answers are actually very simple. We need to stop new oil licensing and that's what we're asking.

"With the oil reserves that we have now and the oil fields that we have that are still going, that would provide us with eight years of oil, if we said no to new oil and that's what we're asking for."

Richard continued to hammer her with questions, saying: "You talk about democracy but lets talk about hypocrisy.

"The clothes that you're wearing to some extent owe their existance to oil … There are so many ways oil impacts on your life as a protestor but you don't acknowledge that."

Miranda replied: "We're talking about crop failure by 2030, we're talking about people in this country in fuel poverty because of the price of oil and you're talking about what I'm wearing."

Viewers sympathised with Miranda and accused Richard of bullying while also claiming his co-host Ranvir Singh failed to bring balance to the debate.

One person tweeted: "What did I just watch on good morning Britain!!! A young woman comes on to highlight the SERIOUSNESS of the climate emergency and lowry turner and the supposedly impartial RICHARD MADELEY attacking her for wearing clothes when shortly Bangladesh will he underwater. DISGRACE."

Another said: "Richard Madeley is getting off bulling a poor 20 year old girl. She is answering every question but he wants to concentrate on how the girl gets her clothes."

One more raged: "How could they all be so rude to a 20 year old trying to change the world for good?! That other woman telling her its all about her ego and not for an actual good cause. Then saying she should just get a new government elected like ?? If only we could!!"

And a fourth said: "This is an absolute disgrace. Three-on-one bullying. It’s not just Madeley. Look at her face, how upset she is as they attack her. But #GMB will enjoy this as it lights up social media thinking they have ‘created a moment’. It’s #GMB that needs to “read the room”

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Another fumed: "The bullying tactics used by #GMB against a women is disgusting, the young lady stood no chance"

And a sixth said: "Ranvir please make this balanced. @GMB #gmb It is such an important issue. #GlobalWarming #environment #ClimateJustice Richard is being unfair."

Miranda appeared on the ITV breakfast show after Extinction Rebellion blocked ten major oil facilities across Britain earlier this month in their latest eco-mob protest.

The group is working alongside supporters of Just Stop Oil in Essex, Hertfordshire and Birmingham.

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