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8 Dec, 2020 13:03

‘Hypocrites’: Sky News broadcasters dragged over the coals for flouting Covid-19 rules after spending months scolding others

‘Hypocrites’: Sky News broadcasters dragged over the coals for flouting Covid-19 rules after spending months scolding others

Sky News presenter Kay Burley and a host of her colleagues are being branded hypocrites for flouting Covid-19 restrictions for the anchorwoman’s 60th birthday party after spending months chastising others about breaking the rules.

Burley and several of her Sky colleagues including Beth Rigby, Inzamam Rashid and Sam Washington were in a group of 10 people that attended the presenter’s milestone birthday bash at the Century Club in Soho, London, on Saturday night.

While the glamorous gathering appeared to break the UK’s ‘rule of six’, the group tried to get around the coronavirus restrictions by spanning across two separate tables at the swanky establishment.

The party later moved on to a nearby restaurant before a smaller group returned to Burley’s home to continue the celebrations.

Burley was absent from her breakfast show on Tuesday morning after the Guido Fawkes website published news of the rule-breaching bash on Monday evening. Sky said it was “disappointed” by the incident and that all of the staff are facing a review of their conduct.

Burley partially admitted to breaking the rules, claiming she “popped in” to another restaurant after the 11pm curfew while waiting for a taxi because she had to use the bathroom.

“I want to apologise to you all for an error of judgment. On Saturday night I was enjoying my 60th birthday at a Covid compliant restaurant,” she wrote on Twitter.

“I am embarrassed to say that later in the evening I inadvertently broke the rules. I had been waiting for a taxi at 11pm to get home. Desperate for the loo I briefly popped into another restaurant to spend a penny. I can only apologise,” she added.

The seemingly flagrant flouting of the rules unleashed a wave of criticism against Burley, who has spent the entire pandemic holding people's feet to the fire over lockdown rules. 

Numerous people branded the presenter and her colleagues “hypocrites” over the apparent double standards. News footage of Burley and Rigby chastising politicians and advisers was widely shared, with many asking if the broadcasters would be resigning from their positions.

“We place the highest importance on complying with the government guidelines on Covid, and we expect all our people to comply,” a spokesperson for Sky News said. 

“We were disappointed to learn that a small number of Sky News staff may have engaged in activity that breached the guidelines. Although this took place at a social event in personal time, we expect all our people to follow the rules that are in place for everyone. An internal process is under way to review the conduct of the people involved.”

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