Rebekah Vardy has once again denied claims that she bullied Iain Lee when they appeared on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here! in 2017.
The WAG, 40, said on Wednesday that she has ‘nothing bad to say about him,’ despite accusations from fans at the time she ganged up on the broadcaster, 46, with the other campmates, with a series of incidents during their three-week stint in the camp.
But during her time in the jungle, Rebekah’s behaviour sparked so much backlash that fans called for her to be axed from her ambassador role at anti-bullying charity Young Minds UK – and since then Iain has repeatedly slammed his treatment of her.
Dramatic: During their time on I’m A Celebrity in 2017, Rebekah was accused of ‘bullying’ Iain, when she claimed that he was ‘playing a game’ and calling him ‘fake’
It began when Iain failed to complete a Dingo Dollar challenge, breaking down in tears after struggling to overcome his fear of heights.
The rest of the camp weren’t convinced by Iain’s decision to pull out of the challenge due to his fears.
Later Rebekah said in the Bush Telegraph: ‘I think he’s a guy that’s struggling, but that doesn’t excuse bad behaviour and I won’t tolerate it,’ while boxer Amir Khan admitted: ‘I just think Iain should have given it a go.’
Tough time: It began when Iain failed to complete a Dingo Dollar challenge, breaking down in tears after struggling to overcome his fear of heights
Emotional: After Iain broke down in tears, and refused to complete a Dingo Dollar challenge due to his crippling fear of heights, Rebekah insisted she ‘wouldn’t tolerate’ his behaviour
But it was Rebekah’s accusations towards Iain that he was ‘playing a game’ on the show – after he received immunity from the first vote-off despite expressing his desire to leave – that sparked a majority of the bullying claims from viewers.
Speaking to Iain by the fire, Rebekah claimed he was ‘playing a game’, and actually wanted to win the show, commenting: ‘Look at you, you secret game planner, buzzing that you are not going out tomorrow, you’ve got a game plan you have.’
Later claiming he was ‘fake’, she said in the Bush Telegraph: ‘He is going in there to win and he is playing the sympathy card and he isolates himself from the rest of the camp and then as soon as the cameras are on he wants the limelight.’
Rebekah was accused of treating Iain unfairly in the camp, alongside fellow stars Jamie Lomas, Amir Khan and Dennis Wise, and after leaving the show, she doubled down by branding the radio presenter ‘fake’.
‘You’re a game player!’ But the moment that sparked a majority of the bullying claims was Rebekah accusing Iain of ‘playing a game’ on the show
She said: ‘Honestly, he’s fake, I spent a lot of time with him and I was so careful of what I wanted to say on the VT and what I didn’t want to say.
‘But now I’m out and he’s got a game plan and I hate people who pretend to be something they’re not.
‘He wanted to play the sympathy card, he isolates himself from the rest of camp, then when the cameras are on he’s all about us.’
Hitting back: Rebekah was accused of treating Iain unfairly in the camp, and after leaving the show, she doubled down by branding the radio presenter ‘fake’
After leaving the camp, Rebekah learned that she had been accused of bullying Iain, and broke down in tears over the claims which aired during I’m A Celebrity: Coming Out.
She said: ‘He can cut the mood in camp in seconds. It’s a shame that he feels he has to be like that, but who knows what he’s going through, it’s hard to speculate.
When a phone call to her management team revealed she’d been accused of ganging up against him, she was brought to tears in the arms of her father.
Surprised, she said: ‘You know what, I was the one that was being the most supportive of him. A bully? I’ve never been a bully in my whole entire life.’
Tears: In scenes that aired during the I’m A Celebrity: Coming Out, Rebekah broke down in tears when her management revealed she’d been accused of ganging up against Iain
What was that? Adding fuel to the fire, Rebekah was seen shaking hands with Amir Khan and Dennis Wise in the Coming Out show, when they watched Iain finish in third place
Rebekah went onto try and defend herself during a conversation with Dennis, telling him: ‘I came out to the biggest s**t storm. And you know I don’t get upset about things and you know I’m really strong but I actually cried in the car.
‘It really upset me. Something so strong has been said about not just me. You, Jamie, Amir. That we were part of a gang.’
Dennis responded: ‘I am gobsmacked with it. The reason being is because this is not the case. I’ll be surprised with Iain if he doesn’t clarify all of this.’
Rebekah later said to the camera: ‘I wasn’t a ringleader and I definitely wasn’t a catalyst to anything that was going on with him in there.’
Clarification: Speaking on Good Morning Britain after she left the camp, Rebekah once again tried to defend herself, insisting her words on Extra Camp were ‘taken out of context’
The WAG came under fire, however, when fans caught her shaking hands with Dennis and Amir when Iain was voted out.
‘After seeing that handshake between Amir Becky and dennis seriously WTF?? I’m so glad they didn’t win,’ one viewer wrote on Twitter.
Another added: ‘That handshake between Becky, Dennis and Amir when Iain came out was so unnecessary and shows more than what they’ve said in their defence.’
Speaking on Good Morning Britain after she left the camp, Rebekah once again tried to defend herself, insisting her words on Extra Camp were ‘taken out of context.’
She told Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid: ‘I was under pressure when I made that comment and it was slightly taken out of context.
‘We had some lovely conversations about our past… we actually presented him something to celebrate his courage after a trial. A special homemade medal, it was a hard as nails medal.’
Nope! Originally when he left the camp, Iain denied that Rebekah had bullied him, saying: ‘There was no bullying going on. Let’s quash this rumour once and for all. Bullying is a very serious thing’
However, Rebekah was tight-lipped on which celebrities she planned to stay in touch with in the camp.
‘Oh that’s an under pressure question, I couldn’t pinpoint one. In all honesty there isn’t any, contrary to what has been said. We all got on so well and maybe that’s what the public didn’t like.’
After Iain himself left the camp, finishing in third place, he originally denied that Rebekah had bullied him, saying: ‘There was no bullying going on. Let’s quash this rumour once and for all. Bullying is a very serious thing. It’s a huge word. There was no bullying whatsoever. ‘
However, after watching the Coming Out show, Iain appeared to change his tune, and even called out Rebekah when she praised him for ‘clearing up’ the accusations of bullying.
She tweeted: ‘A big thank you to Iain Lee for clearing that up & also for the ‘deliciously dark’ sense of humour comment
‘Lots of love to all of the 2017 campmates. It was a pleasure to share a camp with all of you. See you all soon xx’
But an unimpressed Iain responded: ‘I hadn’t seen the comments made behind my back or the ones made by some camp mates when they left. I still suggest the word bullying is too strong. But.’
Really? After watching the Coming Out Show, Iain appeared to change his tune towards Rebekah, tweeting he wasn’t aware of comments that were made ‘behind his back’
In the years since, Iain has continued to recalled Rebekah’s treatment of him in the jungle, saying he found the WAG to be ‘unpleasant’ during his talkRADIO show in 2019.
‘I didn’t get on with Rebekah [in the jungle]. I found her very dark… I got a very dark energy from her,’ he explained. ‘The first thing she said to me was ‘I thought you were an f**king t**t.’
Iain continued: ‘I found her thoroughly unpleasant. It’s no secret her and Jamie Lomas were my least favourite.’
He also claimed Rebekah was mean to his sister and ‘summoned her’ to her room after she was booted out of the jungle.
Fuming: He called out Rebekah after she praised him for ‘clearing up’ the accusations of bullying