An influencer has asked people to “be kind” from her poolside in Dubai as she defended her “essential” lockdown trip to film workout videos.
This Morning presenters Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield grilled fitness influencer Sheridan Mordew, 24, on why she felt it was essential for her to leave the country when she “could film her workouts from a garage in Bolton”.
Ms Mordew fled Sunderland and flew to Dubai on January 1, the day the North East entered Tier 4 restrictions that required people to stay at home and avoid all non-essential travel.
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Since then the social media star, whose channel is called “Shape Up With Sher,” has been sharing glamorous bikini pictures with her Instagram followers and selfie videos of her riding camels in the desert as she enjoys relaxed restrictions in the United Arab Emirates.
She told Holly and Phil: “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”
Holly interrupted and asked if the influencer was being kind to NHS nurses working round the clock begging the public to stay at home and curb the spread of coronavirus which has claimed the lives of over 100,000 people over lockdown.
“It’s not in the spirit of it, is it? When at the moment in lockdown we’re in this together that’s what it feels like," Holly remarked.
“However, when we see someone like you beside a pool, we’re not in this together, it’s not in the lockdown spirit.”
Ms Mordew hit back:“I think what you’ve gone to understand is my job. My job is to motivate people if I was going to be lazy, if I was going to sit back, if I didn’t bother to provide a service.”
This Morning producers played clips of Sheridan’s content with her riding a camel, driving Holly wild with jealousy.
“But this clip doesn’t motivate me,” Holly exclaimed. “It makes me feel utterly jealous. I just want to feel the sun on my skin that’s all I want. I would love nothing more than to do that.”
“What you posted there is essential,” Phillip mocked.
"There are so many people who are suffering with their mental health, however, the rules on travel have nothing to do with mental health, it's purely based on work," Holly hit back.
Phil said: "We are all stuck in the house, and looking at things like this it's everyone's nature to be the outrage brigade, you are enjoying something they can’t and that annoys them.”
He added: "Other influencers work from home and haven’t stretched the rules as you have."
Sheridan said: "I came to Dubai purely for business. I am a personal trainer,
"The gyms are closed and everything was in tiers so I took my online business over to Dubai."
Phillip told her: "A lot of this fitness stuff could be in your garage in Bolton.
"You don't have to be in Dubai.
"But the glamour stuff you post elsewhere is you sitting in a bikini on a sun lounger enjoying the sunshine."
Holly and Phil pointed to Joe Wicks, who managed to not only work in the UK, but saw his followers multiply during lockdown.
But Sheridan claimed that her mental health was suffering in the UK.
"During the second lockdown I was struggling to motivate myself.
"My clients depend on me to bring them motivation and happiness.
"My mental health was suffering. I thought I am not going to be able to start anything new sitting in the house.
"And I thought the only way I am going to get out of this is to find the opportunity to get on a plane for essential travel.
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"I'm not hurting anybody, I'm creating jobs, helping people's mental health, I'm following the guidelines."
Ms Mordew has now made her Instagram private after she was deluged with criticism from This Morning viewers furious about her trip.
One tweeted: “@thismorning interview with the ‘influencer’ had made me kinda mad. As someone who’s lost/know people with mental health. Using it as a reason to go to Dubai is shocking . People want to see their family’s for mental health & thousands of people are not doing that. #ThisMorning.”
Another wrote: “Riding camels and sitting by a pool is not influencing people whatsoever. Essential work-trip my a**e. #ThisMorning.”
One woman tweeted: “So Sheridan Mordew says she’s an influencer on 11.5k followers on insta. I’ve got 11.5k followers on insta but my job as an essential key worker as a manager in a supermarket is more impressive than riding camels in Dubai!!”
Ms Mordew had previously said that haters may be jealous and may not understand the influencer industry.
She said: "A lot of people sitting in the house watching the posts - it might be a little bit of jealousy, I don't know - but I think a lot of the time they don't understand the business side of things.”
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