Friday 16 July 2021 4:48 pm

GB News director John McAndrew quits to avoid fuelling culture-wars

The director of GB News John McAndrew has quit the new rightwing broadcaster today, according to reports.

It has been suggested McAndrew had come under pressure to up culture war topics instead of his local reporting focus, and so chose to resign.

The senior executive handed in his resignation after a row regarding the gesture of taking the knee on screen, the Guardian first reported.

McAndrew said in June ahead of the channel’s launch that it would not be “a hate-filled divisive shout-fest”, which was “180 degrees away from where we want to be.”

Presenter Guto Harri was taken off air for taking the knee, in support of the gesture.

The gesture made headlines after members of England’s Euro team took the knee to show solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and the racist abuse faced by players.

GB News, which launched just four weeks ago, said Harri breached editorial standards by taking the knee.

“GB News is becoming an absurd parody of what it proclaimed to be – not defending free speech and combatting cancel culture but replicating it on the far right. Nasty,” friends of Harri said, according to the Guardian.

“It’s ridiculous to say he’s breached editorial standards and is almost certainly defamatory. In reality it wasn’t a breach of editorial code but ‘sacked for offending the lynch mob’.”

Harri is not expected to appear on the show for the rest of the summer.