On Tuesday, March 9, Piers, a former British tabloid editor and America's Got Talent co-judge, left the ITV show. His departure followed a backlash over his dismissive comments about the Duchess of Sussex, who he has criticized many times, and the shocking reveals she made during Prince Harry's recent tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey, including about her own mental health before the couple's 2020 royal exit.
"Piers' departure sincerely wasn't the conclusion I was hoping for," Good Morning Britain co-host and ITV weatherman Alex Beresford tweeted on Thursday, March 11. "Over the last few years, Piers and I have had a lively, cheeky on-air relationship. We both wanted to be on the show Tuesday morning, and from our very public conversations on Twitter, we both knew how strongly our opinions differed on the treatment of Harry and Meghan pre and post the interview that has split the world."
He continued, "I hoped we could reach a place of understanding. It's sad that we weren't able to get there, but challenging his opinion was not an outrage. On this occasion, we have to agree to disagree. I didn't want him to quit, but I did want him to listen. Personally, Piers has always supported my growth. He's given me advice on several occasions and for that I am grateful. I wish him well!"
Piers has not responded to Alex's remarks.
On Monday, March 8, Piers said on Good Morning Britain, "I'm sorry, I don't believe a word she says, Meghan Markle. I wouldn't believe her if she read me a weather report. And the fact that she's fired up this onslaught against our royal family, I think, is contemptible."
Monday's episode drew more than 41,000 complaints to Britain's communications regulator Offcom and the company announced an investigation. Meghan herself also filed a formal complaint against Piers specifically with regard to his comments about her remarks over her mental health.
On Tuesday, March 9, Alex told Piers on Good Morning Britain, "I understand that you don't like Meghan Markle. You've made it so clear a number of times on this program. A number of times. And I understand that you've got a personal relationship with Meghan Markle, or had one, and she cut you off. She's entitled to cut you off if she wants to. Has she said anything about you since she cut you off? I don't think she has. But yet you continue to trash her."
Piers then walked off the set, saying, "OK, I'm done with this." The TV personality had famously said on Irish TV station RTÉ's Late Late Show in 2018 that he and Meghan exchanged DMs and met up at a pub in 2015, "got on brilliantly" and that she later "ghosted" him.
Piers later returned to the set and said, "It's not for me to question if she felt suicidal, I am not in her mind and that is for her to say. My real concern was a disbelief, frankly...that she went to a senior member of the royal household and told them she was suicidal and was told she could not have any help because it would be a bad look for the family."
Two days following the tell-all, Queen Elizabeth II addressed Meghan and Harry's interview for the first time. "The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan," read the statement, released by Buckingham Palace. "The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members."
Later on Tuesday, ITV announced that Piers had decided to leave Good Morning Britain. He tweeted the following day, "On Monday, I said I didn't believe Meghan Markle in her Oprah interview. I've had time to reflect on this opinion, and I still don't. If you did, OK. Freedom of speech is a hill I'm happy to die on. Thanks for all the love, and hate. I'm off to spend more time with my opinions."
Piers also told reporters on Wednesday that his ITV departure was "amicable." He also doubled down on his original comments about Meghan.
"I don't believe almost anything that comes out of her mouth and I think the damage she's done to the British monarchy and to the Queen at a time when Prince Philip is lying in hospital is enormous and frankly contemptible," he said, referring to the recent hospitalization of Harry's 99-year-old grandfather. "If I have to fall on my sword for expressing an honestly held opinion about Meghan Markle and that diatribe of bilge that she came out with in that interview, so be it."