BBC presenter attracts complaints after calling Brexiteers 'headbangers, zealots and quislings'

Presenter Sue Perkins at the 2019 Edinburgh TV Festival.

Presenter Sue Perkins at the 2019 Edinburgh TV Festival. - Credit: PA

A BBC presenter has attracted a wave of complaints after calling Brexiteers "headbangers, zealots and quislings".

Sue Perkins, a former Great British Bake Off host and well-known comedian, sparked controversy last week when she posted a tweet mocking David Cameron and Brexiteers.

Responding to a message by the former Tory prime minister, which slammed the decision to cut Britain's foreign aid spend to 0.5% of GDP, Perkins wrote: "I deeply regret your decision to hold a referendum on the settled question of Europe to appease headbangers, zealots and quislings."

This prompted an immediate reaction from anti-EU and anti-BBC campaigners.

Rebecca Ryan, the campaign director for Defund BBC, said: "Sue deeply regrets giving British people – or as she likes to call them 'headbangers and zealots' – a say in whether or not the UK should be subsumed into a federal EU. Pesky democracy."

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Political commentator Calvin Robinson also responded, and wrote: "Do you genuinely believe the majority of the voting British public are headbangers, zealots and quislings?

"Is that really how you see your fellow Brits? That's disappointing, Sue."

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Perkins responded, clarifying that she was "referring to the ERG and co..." - a reference to the group of Eurosceptic MPs who campaigned for a Brexit vote. 

Rallying around the presenter, @twangit16 wrote: "To those that think Brexit is a win for the country, come back next year and tell me it's been a success. I'll wait."

@QMolly posted: "Agree. Unnecessary and costly in so many ways!"

Sophie Moulton added: "Couldn’t have said it better myself!"

Christopher Linfoot followed up with: "This. A million times. This."

@ad_apd quipped: "If I had had the words this is exactly what I would have said."

Perkins even responded to someone who called her snobby, writing: "Yeah. I'm pretty snobby about the ERG and what they've done."

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