Alan Titchmarsh has blasted ITV 1's reality shows just months after signing a new two-year deal with the channel for his chat show. The garden export moaned that shows such as I'm A Celebrity were puerile and dreary compared to rivals on the BBC such as Strictly Come Dancing.
Alan's comments are made even more awkward by the fact he presented ITV1's reality flop show Popstar to Operastar last year. The programme, which saw popstars (and we use that word loosest possible way) try their hand at opera, failed to attract viewers , dipping to just 3.5 million.
Alan complained: "I think a lot of reality TV is puerile. I mean, Strictly Come Dancing is great - you learn how to dance. But to go to the other end, to put people in the jungle - I mean I know it's popular and people want to watch it, fair enough. But from my point of view it's rather dreary. There's a much more exciting life going on out there."
The telly presenter unsurprisingly wanted more gardening TV on the box, telling The Sun: "I'm a great believer that gardening can offer everybody something and it can't be overestimated.
"To some it seems quite frivolous but gardens make up millions of acres and are little nature reserves in their own rights and are very important - as is communicating gardening skills. When Ground Force and Home Front In The Garden were on in the late Nineties and early 2000s we had more gardening, and it has subsided somewhat."