Huw Edwards reaction: Dan Walker and Elizabeth Day among stars sharing compassion for presenter

Edwards’ wife, Vicky Flind, said the newsreader is ‘suffering from serious mental health issues’ and is now ‘receiving inpatient hospital care’

Ellie Harrison
Saturday 15 July 2023 12:08 BST
Huw Edwards named by wife as BBC star at centre of scandal

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Louise Thomas

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Dan Walker, David Baddiel and Elizabeth Day are among those who have shared their thoughts on the discussion surrounding Huw Edwards, after the BBC presenter was named as the person facing allegations over payments to a teenager for sexually explicit images.

After days of speculation over the presenter’s identity, on Wednesday (12 July), Edwards’ wife, Vicky Flind, said the newsreader is “suffering from serious mental health issues” and is now “receiving inpatient hospital care where he will stay for the foreseeable future”.

Her statement came as the Metropolitan Police announced that no criminal offence had been committed, and the BBC will now resume its own “fact-finding” investigation into claims made in The Sun last week that Edwards, 61, had paid a young person around £35,000 over three years, from the age of 17, for photos.

Among the many public figures to share their reactions to the news on social media was comedian David Baddiel, 59, who tweeted: “The thing about the Huw Edwards story – beyond the conversation about it being a distraction to political news – is for years the tabloids printed gossip about famous people’s private lives with no comeback about harm or discussion about public interest. That time is over. Good.

“Obviously I’m not suggesting it’s the last time the tabloids will ever do this. But they can no longer do it, as they used to, without compunction.”

While The Sun is now claiming it “never alleged criminality” in its reporting, a story the publication ran on its website this week did state that the BBC presenter “could be charged by cops and face years in prison”.

How to Fail podcaster and author Elizabeth Day, 44, expressed empathy for Edwards, tweeting: “Nothing but compassion for Huw Edwards, his family and his loved ones. Print that.”

Former BBC Breakfast presenter Dan Walker, 46, posted: “This is an awful situation and will come as a big shock to many. Huw Edwards is clearly not in a good place at the moment and this must be terrible for his family. I just hope that whoever needs help – on all sides of this – gets the time, space and support they need to heal.”

Sharing a 2022 interview he did with Edwards, former Tony Blair spokesman and The Rest is Politics podcast host Alastair Campbell, 66, tweeted: “This is the @menshealthuk interview on mental health and other issues that I did with Huw Edwards… to those saying he is “playing the mental health card” – I suggest you take a long hard look in the mirror and ask what kind of person you really are.”

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Columnist Owen Jones, 38, shared: “The Sun is a disgusting rag and they have to pay for what they’ve done to Huw Edwards. They tried to destroy someone’s life with false claims of illegality involving a minor. We know now there was no criminality, and The Sun have driven a vulnerable man into medical care.”

Huw Edwards
Huw Edwards (AFP via Getty Images)

“This is an awful and shocking episode, where there was no criminality, but perhaps a complicated private life,” posted The News Agents podcast host Jon Sopel, 64. That doesn’t feel very private now. I hope that will give some cause to reflect. They really need to. I wish @thehuwedwards well.”

Edwards is one of the UK’s top earning presenters, known for his solemn reporting of major national events, including the late Queen’s funeral in 2022.

The married father of five has fronted the BBC’s News at Ten for two decades, becoming one of the most recognisable faces on British TV.

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