Phillip Schofield was forced to defend himself after Conservative politician Ann Widdecombe suggested he is paid more than his This Morning co-star Holly Willoughby. Holly and Phil were interviewing Ann about feminism and the #MeToo movement, when the politician said: "When it comes to the more esoteric gaps that we've seen, such as in the media, you know while the male presenter gets more than the female or whatever it may be…"
"We're paid the same," Phil quickly interjected, while Holly chimed in: "We are." Ann sarcastically responded "well done" before making her point that pay gaps are "largely a myth" and that women have "never had it so good".
"We're paid the same," Phil quickly interjected, while Holly chimed in: "We are"
During the heated debate, Ann also scolded Holly for interrupting her, telling the mum-of-three: "I'm about to tell you if you have the patience. Are you auditioning for John Humphrys' job or something? I once asked him if he was paid by the interruption." Despite the feisty exchange, viewers at home were left in stitches. One fan took to Twitter to write: "HAHA paid per interrupting... Phil and Holly being schooled #ThisMorning." Another commented: "Phil and Holly arguing with Ann Widdecombe is highly entertaining."
MORE: Kate's first engagement following maternity leave is revealed
Holly was reportedly given a £200k pay rise last year
Last year, it emerged that Holly, 37, was given a £200,000 pay rise to put her on the same salary as her co-host Phil. She had reportedly been earning a third less than her fellow presenter; £400,000 in comparison to Phil's £600,000. The decision came after the pair negotiated their salaries for Dancing on Ice, and ITV bosses realised they couldn't pay the presenters the same fee for the ice skating competition, and not for their work together on This Morning.
Speaking about not knowing Philip's salary previously, Holly told The Sun: "I think it's outrageous, I mean there's no reason for it at all. If you have two equally qualified people who have been doing something for the same amount of time then there is absolutely no excuse." She added: "Do you know what? I have no idea. We've never spoken about it. The thing is, it's a really difficult question to answer because I think you have to trust in your employer really. You have to trust that they respect you in that way, and I would hope our employer would respect me."
Holly's high-street style:
MORE: Prince William makes rare comment about baby Prince Louis
Being one of the most in-demand female presenters, Holly is estimated to be worth an impressive £10million. The Celebrity Juice star makes her millions from her various TV credits as well as her lucrative partnership deals with Garnier, Oral B, BHS and Diet Coke. She and husband Dan also own company, Roxy Media.
Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.