Robinson: Powerful men tried to get in my hotel room

Anne Robinson has revealed that "powerful guys" made attempts to get into her hotel room at conferences during her early career.

Robinson also acknowledged that while women still have to "put up with inappropriate behaviour from men", she feels they should choose between continuing to complain about such behaviour or ensuring it does not happen to them.

The broadcaster made the comments ahead her BBC documentary The Truth About Women, billed as an exploration her "provocative view" that women may have become "too fragile" in the wake the MeToo movement, the Time's Up initiative and the gender pay gap.

She also added that women need to accept that workplaces are "politically and sexually treacherous", recalling her own experience "powerful men" trying to get into her hotel room when she was a young reporter.

"I'm still not sure that younger women have worked out what they want," the Watchdog and Weakest Link presenter told Radio Times.

"Having passed on the warrior baton that enabled women to become prime ministers and heads city institutions, it transpires that] we're still having to put up with inappropriate behaviour from men while not doing anything about it.

"I'm starting to feel like it's going to take another 100 years to get true equality."

On how she would deal with unwanted advances, she told the magazine that she didn't "clout" a man if he "tried to pat my bum, because I never attached that much importance to it".

"I just used to sigh and curtly say, 'Look, I'm very busy, please don't waste my time'," she said. "I certainly didn't run crying to the loo. I just thought the quicker I got to the top, the sooner I wouldn't have to put up with this nonsense."

The 73-year-old – who began her career in journalism as the only female trainee reporter at the Daily Mail in the late 1960s – discussed her own experience sexual harassment when she attended political conferences.

Recalling being chased up the stairs at Brighton's Grand Hotel, she continued: "It sounds ghastly but I just thought it terribly funny.

"The same powerful guys who could call the country to a halt were the ones pathetically trying to get into my hotel bedroom."

The Trouble With Women airs on Thursday, June 14 on BBC One.


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