claire richards brits

Steps star Claire Richards reveals the surprising reason she was dropped from I'm A Celebrity

The star found fame in Steps in 1997

Sharnaz Shahid

Steps singer Claire Richards has revealed she was once turned down the opportunity to appear in I'm A Celebrity. The 41-year-old, who became a pop sensation in the nineties, explained that ITV show bosses discouraged her to take part due to the amount of weight she lost. "It was a time when I'd just lost quite a lot of weight but they didn't realise that I had," she explained. "They wanted me to be fat apparently, that was the excuse I got back, that I was too thin."

Claire Richards has claimed she was once turned down for I'm A Celebrity

However, an I'm A Celebrity spokeswoman has since hit back at the claims. A representative for ITV told HELLO!: "I'm A Celebrity would never cast campmates based on their shape or size, all celebrities are assessed for their suitability to life in the jungle." Claire, who has a history of yo-yo dieting, has previously struggled to control her weight. Over the years, the pop star has fluctuated between a size 20 and a size eight over the years.

MORE: All of the rumoured contestants for I'm a Celebrity 2019 so far

The British singer often speaks out about her journey with food and dieting, previously admitting that food was "like a drug". In 2012, Claire opened up in her book, All of Me: My Story, telling readers: "Food for me is almost like a drug – I get an instant gratification from it, but it doesn’t last very long. So then I have to find the next thing to eat to satisfy my craving. You could compare it to being a drug addict or an alcoholic."

Loading the player...

During an appearance on Loose Women in 2015, Claire confessed her weight has played a massive role in her life. She explained: "I have accepted people will always want to know what my weight is. It has dominated so much of my life. When I lose weight, people come and tell me I’ve inspired them. I really like that. But when I gain weight, I get trolled online by keyboard warriors who think they have the right to judge what my scales say." The star added: "You can't win, so I stopped trying to please people, apart from my family, a long time ago. I am who I am and I weigh what I weigh. It just happens to change a lot."

MORE: Claudia Winkleman makes rare red carpet appearance to support husband Kris

Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.

More on: