Rylan Clark-Neal criticises influencers for 'lording it up on the beach' during lockdown

Tom Beasley
·Contributor
·2-min read

Watch: Rylan Clark-Neal makes Big Brother confession

Rylan Clark-Neal has hit out at influencers jetting off to Dubai during the coronavirus pandemic and "lording it up on the beach" while everyone else is stuck at home.

The 32-year-old presenter said he wished influencers luck, but said their work could not compare to his own presenting, including teaching families how to cook cheap meals via the rebooted Ready Steady Cook.

Read more: Rylan says childhood bullies mean he'll always hate how he looks

“The things I work on are worthy of doing. I’m not going to Dubai on a plane and taking photos in my bikini," he told The Sun.

He added: “I just feel at a time when there are a lot of things going on, seeing pictures of people getting on a plane going to a foreign country and lording it up on the beach for work purposes... well, I can’t believe how much work there seems to be going on in the UAE.” 

Rylan Clark-Neal attending The Audio and Radio Industry Awards in March 2020. (Photo by Lia Toby/PA Images via Getty Images)
Rylan Clark-Neal attending The Audio and Radio Industry Awards in March 2020. (Photo by Lia Toby/PA Images via Getty Images)

Influencer culture has been in the spotlight during the COVID-19 lockdown, with numerous former Love Island contestants and fitness gurus flocking to Dubai, where social distancing restrictions are looser.

Many have claimed these journeys count as "essential" work-related trips, but this has not prevented criticism from commentators and fellow reality TV stars.

Read more: Olivia Attwood condemns influencers for lockdown trips

Love Island star Anton Danyluk revealed he has received death threats since he jetted off to the UAE on a work visa in December.

In January, Zara Holland — who competed on Love Island in 2016 — was fined more than £4,000 after violating rules around quarantine in Barbados.

Rylan Clark-Neal fronts the rebooted version of 'Ready Steady Cook'. (Credit: BBC/Endemol /Graeme Hunter)
Rylan Clark-Neal fronts the rebooted version of 'Ready Steady Cook'. (Credit: BBC/Endemol /Graeme Hunter)

Clark-Neal broke into the entertainment world when he was a contestant on The X Factor in 2012, finishing in fifth place with mentor Nicole Scherzinger.

He won Celebrity Big Brother the following year and subsequently earned a gig presenting the reality behemoth's spin-off show Bit on the Side.

Read more: Rylan reveals why he never blocks online trolls

Since then, Clark-Neal's presenting portfolio has grown enormously to include revivals of Supermarket Sweep and Ready Steady Cook, as well as This Morning and Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two.

Though he was portrayed as a light-hearted and often jokey act during his time on X Factor, Clark-Neal says he has "no regrets" about how he got his start in entertainment.

He added: "I know exactly where I have come from and every day I remind myself how I got to where I am and where it all began. I owe my whole career to the public."

Watch: Supermarket Sweep contestant makes Rylan faux pas