ITV BGT winner makes stance clear on David Walliams exit following leaked audio saga: 'Gutted'

ITV BGT winner makes stance clear on David Walliams exit following leaked audio saga: 'Gutted'

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Olivia Gantzer

By Olivia Gantzer

Published: 20/04/2024

- 08:01

Updated: 20/04/2024

- 14:44

Lance Corporal Jones is a fan-favourite from the show following his touching performances

Britain’s Got Talent returns to ITV this weekend, with a whole host of weird and wonderful acts set to grace the stage.

Former winner Lance Corporal Jones spoke exclusively to GB News to reflect on his 2016 experience after winning the nation’s hearts as the soldier and part-time magician.

Last year’s series was the first to take place without David Walliams as a judge since before 2012, because the comedian was involved in a controversial scandal.

Walliams’ resignation followed the leaking of a transcript of comments he made about contestants on the show.

In 2022, it was revealed Walliams had called an older performer a “c***” three times following an unsuccessful audition.

Talking about another female contestant as she walked off stage, the former judge said: “She’s like the slightly boring girl you meet in the pub that thinks you want to f**k them, but you don’t.”

Richard Jones and David Walliams

The Britain's Got Talent judge left last year following an audio leak scandal


The remarks were picked up on his microphone during auditions at the London Palladium in January 2020.

Last year, Walliams apologised for making the “disrespectful comments”.

Reflecting on his own experience with the judges and if he grew close with any, Jones told GB News: "When you're on the show, you actually don't see the judges behind the scenes at all.

"So because it's a competition, they're very good at making sure that it's fair, so you will never see the judges apart from the moment you're actually performing.

Richard Jones

Former soldier Jones won the 2016 series


"Since the show, I've bumped into him quite regularly now at different events and they're all lovely, lovely people."

Judges Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden, Alesha Dixon and Bruno Tonioli will be back on ITV this weekend to oversee the many auditionees and decide who to put through to the next stage of the competition.

Touching on the recent changes made, Jones said: "The only person I haven’t met is Bruno, obviously Bruno's a new judge I've never met him in real life I'm sure he's lovely.

"And obviously David Walliams used to be one of my favourites. So I’m kind of gutted he's not on the show anymore because he’s just really good fun."

Richard Jones

Jones stunned the judges and viewers with his perfomances


Jones left the judges spellbound throughout the series, and performed an emotional show with a dedication to those serving.

Talking about being a part of the show while in the Army, the 33-year-old recalled: “I think the military as an organisation and military families especially - in that moment, when I won I realised the power of it and how special the military community is, especially the military families.

“So I had a lot of nice messages from in particular people from families who had family members serving overseas, saying that it was nice to see the Army on the forefront of the TV, representing it in such a nice way."

For more information on Jones, visit:

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