Dan Walker defends wearing £299 trainers on Channel 5 News

The Channel 5 news host hit back at critics calling his unconventional footwear a 'disgrace', insisting he thought they were smart.

Dan Walker hosts 5 news at 5
Dan Walker is the host of Channel 5 weekday evening news. (Channel 5)

What did you miss?

Dan Walker has defended his footwear on Channel 5 News, insisting they were "smart" shoes "aren't trainers".

The former BBC Breakfast star returned to host 5 News at 5 after taking time off to enjoy a holiday with his family and drew attention from viewers with his "unconventional" footwear. The 47-year-old journalist and broadcaster decided to speak out on social media to reveal he had been contacted with complaints about his shoes. Walker shared his defence of the £299 designer trainers and insisted he stood by his choice to wear them to read the news.

What, how, and why?

Dan Walker shared a picture of him wearing navy trainers to host Channel 5 news
Dan Walker proudly defended his 'shoes' on social media. (Dan Walker/Instagram)

Walker wore his usual suit and tie to host the evening news on Channel 5 on Tuesday, 8 April along with a pair of slip-on navy leather trainers by Oliver Sweeney. He later defended his choice of footwear on social media, revealing he had had complaints from viewers.

Walker said: "So… a few viewers got in contact about my shoes on @c5news tonight. Personally, I think there are far more important things going on in the world and I don’t believe wearing these counts as a ‘disgrace’ or the dropping of ‘standards’. They aren’t trainers and I think they are smart and I love them."

The newsreader revealed the shoes were by Oliver Sweeney and hashtagged his post #shoesaddict and #shoeslover. He also replied directly to one viewer who criticised the trainers on social media platform X: "A National News Programme and he’s Wearing Trainers... I know it’s not @BBCNews But have standards gone?"

Walker hit back: "Thanks for watching David I love the shoes. I know they are ‘unconventional’ but I do think they are ‘smart’. I did once wear golf shoes on BBC breakfast because I got dressed in the dark @5_News."

Dan Walker arrives for the Ultimate News Quiz charity fundraiser at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London. Celebrities will battle it out for the title of champions, in aid of Action For Children. Picture date: Thursday February 29, 2024. (Photo by Ian West/PA Images via Getty Images)
Dan Walker defended his unconventional footwear. (Getty Images)

The £299 footwear are called Rende Navy and are described on the Oliver Sweeney website as "Antiqued Calf Leather Cupsole Trainers."

Some of Walker's fans did not think the footwear was formal enough for the news. One follower commented: "Not appropriate for reading the news, regardless of it being channel 5. But def wouldn’t go as far as calling them a disgrace." Another said: "They don’t really go with a suit. Would look better with casual wear. Sorry but you did ask!!" And someone else replied: "Defo not a disgrace but I prefer a more classic shoe with a suit personally, I think some traditions are worth preserving."

But others were full of compliments. One said: "Hi Dan, welcome back. Personally, I think it's more about the truth of the news, than what the reader looks like." And another said: "I think they look great. What matters is what you say and your professionalism which of course is second to none."

What else happened on Channel 5 News?

Dan Walker tees off the 6th hole during the BMW PGA Championship Pro-Am at Wentworth Golf Club on September 07, 2022 in Virginia Water, England. (Photo by Oisin Keniry/Getty Images)
Dan Walker dresses smartly even on the golf course. (Getty Images)

Walker previously revealed he had forgotten his shirt and trousers ahead of presenting the news. The presenter, who often cycles to work, revealed he had popped into a local pub to borrow an iron after leaving his work wardrobe at home and making a mad dash to get to the studio on time.

Walker left the BBC in May 2022 after 13 years hosting BBC Breakfast, because he had signed a new deal with Channel 5. The father-of-three said: "I've never ever been motivated by money in any job that I've ever taken, and even though I've loved working at BBC Breakfast and everybody who works on the show, this is a fantastic opportunity to work with a brilliant team at Channel 5." Before he joined the BBC Breakfast team Walker presented Football Focus on BBC from 2009 to 2021.

Walker competed in the 19th series of Strictly Come Dancing in 2021 and finally left the BBC dance competition with professional partner Nadiya Bychkova in the quarter-final after weeks of evading the dance-off thanks to votes from viewers.

5 News at 5 airs on Channel 5 at 5pm on Monday to Friday.

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