Laura Whitmore has addressed her appearance on a British Army podcast after she faced backlash on social media for promoting the project.
Whitmore, 35, shared an Instagram ad showing her recording for the British Army’s The Locker podcast on Monday and told fans that she was “really pleased” to share the first episode, which featured an interview with a soldier named Ella.
Social media users later took issue with Whitmore sharing a tribute to the Northern Irish politician John Hume, who died on Monday, shortly afterwards.
Nobel laureate Hume, who was a founding member of the Social Democratic and Labour Party, was widely hailed as a key figure in the Northern Irish peace process.
When Irish journalist Lisa Hughes said that it was “too early for [her] to get [her] head around Laura Whitmore’s ad for the British Army podcast, followed by a John Hume quote,” the presenter said that the episode presented “a really important conversation for women and being female in all sorts of industries.”
It's too early for me to get my head around Laura Whitmore's ad for the British Army podcast, followed by a John Hume quote. pic.twitter.com/ESNE8aCZeM— Lisa Hughes (@_Lisa_Hughes)August 4, 2020
Hughes then said that Hume “devoted his life to stopping the atrocities of the same army this podcast is effectively a recruitment drive for” and asked Whitmore “what gender has to do with it,” prompting her to respond with “Gender has EVERYTHING to do with it as that’s the conversation.”
After her response provoked criticism from Twitter users, the Love Island star shared a Twitter thread defending her appearance on the podcast and stated that she was not “trying to recruit people to the army.”
I know to those who actually listen to the podcast they’ll understand but in case there’s any confusion I wanted to clear it up— Laura Whitmore (@thewhitmore)August 5, 2020
“I was asked to be a guest on a podcast talking about body issues and being a female in a male dominated industry,” she wrote.
“As I have done a lot in the past. The other guest was a young female soldier. If this looked like me trying to recruit people to the army that is not the case at all.
“I know to those who actually listen to the podcast they’ll understand but in case there’s any confusion I wanted to clear it up.”
She also confirmed to a Twitter follower that she would remove the hashtag #ArmyJobs from her post.