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‘Shades of Marie Antoinette’: Vanessa Feltz blasts Ann Widdecombe over 40p cheese sandwich remark

Vanessa Feltz has blasted Ann Widdecomb after the politician made a remark about the rising cost of cheese sandwiches.

Widdecombe spoke on Politics Live about recent research, which showed that the cost of a homemade cheese sandwich has shot up by a third in the past year to 40p.

After a guest in the audience asked the former Brexit Party MEP what her message to consumers would be, Widdecombe advised people to avoid making cheese sandwiches if they cannot afford to buy the ingredients, saying: “Well, then you don’t do the cheese sandwich”.

Widdecombe added that the “only way” rising food prices could be tackled would be for inflation to come down.

TV presenter Feltz, 61, criticised Widdecombe during Wednesday’s instalment of This Morning (17 May), remarking that the politician’s comments had “shades of Marie Antoinette” who famously said, “Let them eat cake.”

“The people are too poor, they can’t afford bread, so she said ‘let them eat cake’. This is kind of the other way around. You can’t afford a cheese sandwich, ‘well don’t have a cheese sandwich,’” Feltz said on the show.

“But this is very, very back to basics, isn’t it?”

Feltz remarked that Widdecomb was not talking about “caviar or roast pheasant” but a “basic cheese sandwich”.

Vanessa Feltz called Widdecombe’s remarks an ‘unpleasant way of looking at the cost of living crisis’ (ITV)
Vanessa Feltz called Widdecombe’s remarks an ‘unpleasant way of looking at the cost of living crisis’ (ITV)

She continued: “[Bread and cheese are] absolutely staples and I think that does show a certain kind of lordly disdain for real life.”

Feltz added that it was “pretty mind-boggling” that the cost of making a basic sandwich had risen by such an “enormous amount”.

“And if you can’t afford a cheese sandwich, what are you supposed to eat? What does she think people should eat? I mean it really is a very unthinking, I think very unpleasant way of looking at a cost of living crisis.”

New Statesman journalist Rachel Cunliffe said on Politics Live that the situation is so dire for some families that they “cannot afford to feed their children” as a result of the increasing price of basic items. But Ms Widdecombe shot back: “None of it’s new. We’ve been through this before.

“The problem is we’ve been decades now without inflation, we’ve come to regard it as some kind of given right.”