A televised comment by Bridgerton star Adjoa Andoh about the Buckingham Palace balcony being “terribly white” has become the most complained about moment of 2023 so far, Ofcom has said.
More than 4,000 complaints have been filed about the remark, which was made when the actress, 60, appeared on ITV’s live coverage of Saturday’s coronation celebrations.
Andoh, who plays Lady Agatha Danbury in the Netflix show, said: “Looking at all those young people, there is a bit of me that has gone from the rich diversity of the Abbey to the terribly white balcony. I’m very struck by that.”
Andoh later appeared on BBC Radio 4 to clarify what she meant and apologise for remarking on the moment Charles and Camilla appeared on the balcony at Buckingham Palace to wave at the public with their family.
Acknowledging the backlash she received after appearing as a guest pundit, Andoh told radio host Paddy O’Connell on Sunday: “I think I upset a few people yesterday.
“I was talking about the day and how marvellous it was and then looking at the balcony at the end and suddenly went, ‘Oh, it’s so white’ because the day had been so, so mixed and I didn’t mean to upset anybody.”
In an additional statement, Andoh said: “On Saturday King Charles prayed out loud – ‘Grant that I may be a blessing to all thy children, of every faith and belief, that together we may discover the ways of gentleness and be led into the paths of peace’.
“Such a loving prayer, reflecting his wide embrace of the rich diverse peoples celebrating his coronation – and I was one of them, brilliantly included throughout the service.
“Sitting in the warmth of that intentionally wide embrace, I was simply caught by the visual shift on the balcony – not a particularly original observation. There was no intention to upset anyone.
“I continue to celebrate the King who created the Princes Trust, loves the arts, cares for all faiths and for the future of our environment, as he has done for many decades.”
She added that it is “an exciting moment in our history”.
On Wednesday, UK regulator Ofcom said the comment received 4,165 complaints, making it the most complained about moment of the year.
A spokesperson said: “We are assessing the complaints against our broadcasting rules before deciding whether or not to investigate.”
The King’s coronation service at Westminster Abbey was watched by 18.8 million viewers in the UK across 11 channels and services, according to overnight ratings released by the research organisation Barb.
ITV has declined to comment.