Dan Walker has apologised after misinterpreting a column written by Susanna Reid referring to the rivalry between him and Piers Morgan.
The BBC Breakfast host had initially taken issue with Reid’s piece in the Daily Mail, where she wrote that the sniping on Twitter between Walker and her Good Morning Britain co-star Morgan “makes me shudder”.
Walker tweeted: “Interesting. With the greatest respect @susannareid100 the insults that make you ‘shudder’ only really come one way. I enjoy the friendly competition with your programme.
“It keeps us all on our toes and normally stays within the bounds of gentle fun. See you soon.”
In a second tweet, he wrote to Reid: “I understand that columns for this newspaper need to be provocative but I humbly suggest you talk to @louiseminchin @BBCNaga @stephbreakfast @carolkirkwood @mikebreakfast @sallynugent – or anyone I work with – before suggesting I ever put colleagues down or am not supportive.”
However, Reid replied that she “didn’t for a moment suggest this”.
She said: “My reference to you was solely in relation to how you and Piers speak to each other online.”
Walker responded: “I greatly respect @susannareid100 & it appears I may have misread her intentions in this article & for that I apologise – as I have done privately too. Support of colleagues is a particularly sensitive issues at the moment and 1 I take seriously.
“I hope you all have a lovely day.”
Reid wrote that she “would never speak to a colleague like that” in relation to the on-going social media tension between Walker and Morgan.
Discussing Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon’s new Apple TV+ series The Morning Show, she said that she is “sick of female TV stars being portrayed as nasty, snide and competitive”.
She said that her “heart sank as it became clear that the show relies on the well-worn cliche of pitching Jennifer Aniston’s Queen Bee anchor — Alex — against Reese Witherspoon’s younger, perkier reporter, Bradley”.
Reid told of her support for BBC Breakfast host Naga Munchetty, and her Good Morning Britain co-star Charlotte Hawkins as examples against the common female-based trope.
She said: “When Naga Munchetty was unfairly admonished by the BBC over the Donald Trump race row, for example, I sent her a message of support.”
Of Hawkins, who took part in Strictly Come Dancing in 2017 but was the third celebrity to be eliminated, Reid added: “She was heartbroken when she was eliminated from the show and I helped piece her back together on the Monday so she could face going on-air.”
She added: “It might crush the cliché with a stiletto heel, but women succeed by being supportive, not putting each other down. We leave that to the guys.”