Row over new Channel 4 ‘poverty porn’ show

Row over new Channel 4 ‘poverty porn’ show as celebrity children including Tory peer Michelle Mone’s daughter and Gordon Ramsay’s son return to parents’ deprived childhood areas

  • Tory peer Michelle Mone’s daughter Bethany Tobin to go to Glasgow’s East End
  • MP for Glasgow Central Alison Thewliss branded the programme ‘poverty safari’
  • Michelle Mone has hit back branding Thewliss an ‘SNP moron’ on Twitter
  •  Jack Ramsay, son of TV chef Gordon Ramsay, will also appear on Born Famous

Bra tycoon and Scottish Tory peer Michelle Mone has blasted an MP as a ‘SNP moron,’ after she criticised one of her daughters for appearing on Channel 4’s Born Famous.

Bethany Tobin is to head to Bridgeton in Glasgow’s East End – where her mother grew up – to take part in the new four part reality show that sees the offspring of celebrities spend a week in deprived communities.

There they will ‘live the life they would have lived had their parents not found fame’.

Jack Ramsay, son of TV chef Gordon Ramsay, will also appear on Born Famous, as well as Phoenix Chi, daughter of Spice Girl and America’s Got Talent judge Mel B.

But the MP for Glasgow Central Alison Thewliss described the programme as ‘poverty safari’ in a response to a post on Twitter.

Michelle Mone (pictured on Good Morning Britain) has blasted MP for Glasgow Central Alison Thewliss, as a ‘SNP moron’ after Thewliss called new Channel 4 programme Born Famous a ‘poverty safari’

Michelle Mone (right) with her daughter Bethany (left) who will be appearing on new Channel 4 show Born Famous

Gordon Ramsay striking a pose with his son Jack Ramsay. Jack Ramsay will be appearing in the new Channel 4, Born Famous programme

Melanie Brown, also known as Mel B, with her daughter Phoenix Gulzar who will also be appearing on Born Famous

Ms Thewliss tweeted: ‘Utterly despicable exploitation of a kind, close-knit community. No area deserves ‘poverty safari’ treatment, but particularly cruel of @MichelleMone to use East End roots to pick on Bridgeton, which has seen change led by local people, supported @clydegateway. @bridgeton-cc.’

In a Twitter thread, Lady Mone said she felt the need to address the comments on social media on the show her daughter will appear in.

She wrote: ‘The rumours are frankly false gossip. My daughter Bethany has had an invaluable and overwhemingly positive experience filming recently.

‘It’s so disappointing that people have made a snap judgement on what the series is about and I hope they will reserve further judgement for when they are able to view it.


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‘I have so much respect for my background, home and the people of Glasgow especially the East End which you’ll be able to see very soon.

‘Another SNP moron opening their mouth again without knowing the facts and trying to cause trouble.’

In January, Lady Mone directed the insult at SNP MP Stewart McDonald after he critcised her record in the Lords.

MP for Glasgow Central Alison Thewliss (pictured) described the programme as ‘poverty safari’ in a response to a post on Twitter.

He tweeted: ‘Since becoming a Baroness and legislator – for which she is entitled to £300 per day – Ms Mone has submitted no questions to the Government and taken part in only two votes. Still, she’s sold some jewellery.’

Lady Mone has given just three speeches in the her time in the Lords.

Darren Loki McGarvey, whose book Poverty Safari recently won the Orwell Prize, also waded into the online debate.

He tweeted: ‘If they want to ‘confront their feeling of privelege’, I’d be happy to have a chat with them. I know they might mean well, but class experiences can be so divergent that good intentions may appear extremely vulgar and patronising.’

 Channel 4 commissioning editor Emily Jones said Born Famous was about addressing the opportunities that exist for working class children.

Speaking about the show, she said: ‘There is a myth that talent will out whatever the circumstances. Using extraordinary access to some of our most successful celebrities, Born Famous is a novel way to explore the degree to which we’re all in denial about how hard it is to be young today.’

Followers of Ms Thewliss backed her argument, with many aiming their own comments at Mone.

One user said: ‘Well done @alisonthewliss.. too many people forget their old a*** * she could’ve raised her wean with a respect for where she came from and how far she’d come, rather than use it as a prop for more tacky TV ! * TV doesn’t seem interested in the nicer reminiscence’.

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