Mary Portas denies calling cabinet women 'an ugly bunch'

Mary Portas{jcomments off}Mary Portas has spoken about comments she reportedly made earlier this week in which she branded the female members of the cabinet ‘an ugly bunch‘.

The journalist, retail expert and television personality was quoted earlier this week, by Heat magazine, as referring to the women in David Cameron’s cabinet as ‘an ugly bunch‘ and criticised their choice of clothes and was quoted as saying. ‘I could not look at them. They do dress up for my meetings, but I just want to go, ‘Please no, not that necklace, not that skirt’…Id say let’s just put a bit of sex and glamour in there!‘ In the same interview with Heat the fashion guru also said she didn’t understand why Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, was heralded as a fashion icon.

Portas’ comments were quickly picked up on by other news outlets and were widely reported drawing criticism from some quarters. However, in an interview with the Daily Telegraph she insisted she “doesn’t bash women” and her comments were taken completely taken out of context. Portas told The Daily Telegraph’s Hannah Betts that she ‘ I wouldn’t even know who the women in the Cabinet are.’

“When you watch me, you know that I do a lot of things tongue-in-cheek – it’s about humour. Everything I’ve been trying to do is to make women of that age group visible and able to wear clothes that reflect where they’ve come in life and what they’ve achieved. I’m very candid, straightforward and I’ve got a very naughty sense of humour. But I do not want to be one of those women who are bashing – that’s just not my take.” – Mary Portas speaking the Daily Telegraph

In the interview with the broadsheet newspaper Portas also revealed she had written to the four female members of the cabinet about her comments. Undoubtedly the highest profile member of the cabinet is Theresa May, the Home Secretary. Baroness Warsi is also well known – often a target of criticism from some tabloids. The other two women in Cameron’s cabinet are Caroline Spelman, Environment Secretary and Cheryl Gillan the Secretary for State of Wales.

Portas is currently an advisor to David Cameron on revitalising Britain’s declining high streets and also has her own Channel Four series – Mary Queen of Frocks. Portas defected to the broadcaster from BBC Two were her series Mary Queen of Shops was a popular programme. In it Portas would help struggling shops turn around their fortunes doling out her blunt and outspoken views but often or not was spot on.