Helen Skelton talks ‘holding her ground’ with reporter who thought he was ‘more important’

Helen Skelton recalls clash with reporter whilst at Newsround

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This Week On The Farm presenter Helen Skelton, 37, discussed the earlier stages of her career in children’s television and said working on the likes of Blue Peter and Newsround was often discredited. The host claimed she had to defend her news bulletin at one point when a rival correspondent thought his bulletin was more important.

She explained: “Sometimes kids tele gets a bad press.

“I started in a newsroom doing all kinds of serious and intense local radio things, some big stories, and then I went onto Newsround.”

The mother-of-two went on to say that she was often sent to locations to cover the likes of a flood or other big news stories and shared the area with other reporters.

“You have to cover the same story the six o’clock news or the 10 o’clock news are doing,” she explained.

“But, you have to phrase it in a language and explain it in a way that six-year-olds understand it and are not scared.

“I remember having, it was a real wake-up moment for me, I remember standing next to a six o’clock news correspondent and he was basically saying it was more important he said his story before me.

“And I really held my ground because I said, ‘First of all, we’re on air first and second of all what’s more important than telling the next generation that story?

“‘You can use the big words and know the adults can put this story into context whereas, I’ve got two of the challenges you haven’t’.”

Speaking on the Andy Jays podcast, she added, passionately: “Sometimes kids TV doesn’t get the credit that it deserves.

“I always get very passionate about Blue Peter because people go, ‘Oh once you’ve done Blue Peter you can’t do anything else’.

“That show exists to excite and inspire kids about the world – that’s such a massive responsibility that I don’t think anyone should down play really.”

Proving critics wrong, Helen has gone to have a successful career in television.

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Following her move from kids TV, she went on to present sporting events such as the FA Women’s Super League football matches for the BT Sport channel.

In 2008, she joined the BBC’s Countryfile team as a regular presenter.

Nowadays, she also fronts the popular Channel 5 series This Week On The Farm.

In the same chat, she discussed how her career had changed after having her two sons Louis and Ernie.

In 2015, she moved to the south of France with her rugby player husband Richie Myler for his work commitments. 

She said: “I had a baby then moved to France then had my second out there, when you have your first one, I was taking my first with me to the Olympics.

“I was still living in France, but I still went to cover the world championships and I’d take him but when you have two [kids], you can’t really do that, it’s too much.

“You can take one kid and people think that’s cute, you rock up with two kids and people think you’re massively unprofessional.”

Helen added that due to this, it was “harder” to choose jobs.

This Week On The Farm continues tonight at 8pm on Channel 5.

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