Ant Middleton has admitted to making a 'mistake' after facing hefty criticism for an Instagram video, in which he was seen to be encouraging his followers to flout government advice in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.
In the video, he said: "Am I still out travelling the world? Yes. Am I still shaking hands? Yes. Am I still cuddling fans at the airport? Yes. Am I washing my hands and keeping my hygiene to a high standard as always? Yes.
"Has my life changed? No. Am I going to let some disease Covid-19 dictate my life? Absolutely not. Get out there, don't change, f**k Covid-19."
The SAS: Who Dares Wins chief instructor was widely criticised for his ill-advised post.
One person replied to the video, writing: "It's irresponsible b*****ds like Ant Middleton that have caused #CoronaCrisis to become a global pandemic and kill more than it should have. Don't listen to a word this arrogant fool says."
Another said: "How irresponsible no regard for the people who are risking their lives to take care of those afflicted. What a useless tool!"
A third added: "How disappointing @antmiddleton that you would release this. This isn't mental strength against disease. Acting as normal will help spread covid19. NHS workers are working everyday to save lives yet you seem to want to help spread it. Please reconsider."
Following the backlash, he appears to have reconsidered - the original post has been taken down and while not going so far as to directly apologise, he admitted he had 'made a mistake'.
In a new video, he said: "Now I've come out of this bubble, I've realised I've probably been a bit insensitive towards the magnitude, the scale of the crisis, that's happening in the UK and the forever changing situation and advice that's being given.
"So what I've decided to do is take down my previous post because some of the advice that I give (sic) now goes against government advice and I wouldn't want people to come across that now."
He went on to admit that he 'made a mistake' before offering 'shout outs' to various key workers.
On 10 February, the UK government called the coronavirus a 'serious and imminent' threat to public health, while on 11 March the World Health Organisation declared it a 'pandemic'.
The NHS advises you should stay at home for seven days if you have symptoms of coronavirus, while if you live with someone who has symptoms, that period should be extended to 14 days from the day the first person in the home started displaying symptoms.
Meanwhile, if you live with someone who is 70 or over, has a long-term condition, is pregnant or has a weakened immune system, the NHS says you should try to find somewhere else for them to stay for 14 days.
It's okay to not panic. LADbible and UNILAD's aim with our Coronavirus campaign, Cutting Through, is to provide our community with facts and stories from the people who are either qualified to comment or have experienced first-hand the situation we're facing. For more information from the World Health Organisation on Coronavirus, click here.Featured Image Credit: Ant Middleton/Instagram