back to article UK kids presenter gets online support

Supporters of one-armed CBeebies presenter Cerrie Burnell are flocking to her defence following press stories claiming her appearance was upsetting children. The BBC is believed to have received nine complaints since Burnell took over last month. Burnell was born without the lower half of her right arm. Disability campaigner …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    BBC Should Name And Shame Complainers

    I think it's quite dreadful, people have disabilities and children should be brought up to accept it. I fear for the children of those parents who complained. I wonder if the parents surnames were Goebbels, Goering, Himmler, Hitler et al and had VIEWS on what should be done about people with disabilities. I certainly have views on what should be done with people like that, the same view they reached at the Nuremberg trials.

  2. Anonymous Coward

    what press stories?

    This could have been quite a worth while mention - to bad about the (lack of) references? What press stories is the author referring to.... what is the point of referring to some anonymous press reference??? Yes I can use google ofcourse - but that still will not help me to know which references the author of the article is talking about...

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Don't care about her (lack of) arm

    ...but she (and her doubly-armed co-presenter) really need to sound a bit less like a pair of planks reading a bad script.

  4. Dave B

    Taking it?

    "What about the thousands of parents who have spontaneously put their hands up to state their support for Cerrie?"

    Clearly they were taking the piss

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Childhood Erosian

    Controversial I know - but I believe small children should be presented with a utopian version of the world.

  6. Michael Darling


    "Burnell was born without the lower half of her right arm.

    Disability campaigner Clair Lewis said: “What about the thousands of parents who have spontaneously put their hands up to state their support for Cerrie?”"

    That can't have been intentional. Surely not.

  7. Eddie


    "Kids get scared" - what a load of bollocks - kids don't get scared of anything until they are taught to fear it by their parents and/or teachers and/'or peers - try putting a fluffy spider or snake in front of infant - they won't be bothered, there is nothing "instinctive" about such phobias. This is a bunch of parents scared by anything not normal. Thanks for pointing to the facebook group, I'll put my mouldering facebook account to good use for once by joining it. Best of luck to Cerrie Burnell

  8. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    Of course it's news bias.

    Name and shame the complainers and the news outlets.

  9. Rog69
    IT Angle

    Re: UK kids presenter gets online support.

    My 3 year old daughter was more concerned over the sudden and unannounced departure of Chris and Pui, the previous presenters, but she soon got over the fact that Cerrie only had one arm, I just explained to her that either Cerrie was born that way or she lost it in a tragic accident when trying to lift the BBC diversity handbook.

  10. Jimmy Floyd
    Thumb Up

    I've got an idea

    Let's name and shame those who complained as being too stupid to raise children. Then confiscate their children for their own safety. Then admit we made a mistake but refuse to give them back. Then laugh about it. Mob rule!

    No, I'm not serious. Instead, 22,000 versus 9 give me a nice warm glow to see the overwhelming majority of the great British public showing some common sense and decency.

  11. Chris Phillips

    Source of all this b*ll*cks

    Lazy Daily Fail Hack read this ONE thread on Digital Spy...

    and a "news story" is born...

    Just compare the quotes.

  12. Jesthar

    Oh, come on, parents!

    I went to school with a girl who was born with pretty much the same condition as Cerrie Burnell, except maybe her right arm had an inch or two more below the elbow. She used to have a couple of prosthetic arms (a poseable one and one with a motorised grip, which the rest of us thought was fantastic!), and none of us really thought twice about it. As far as we were concerned it was just the way she was born. She didn't let it stop her, either - she even used to play the double bass in the school orchestra!

  13. Kenny Millar

    Stupid Parents

    If your kid is scared by this, then it's because YOU have brought them up to think disabled people are scary!

    What a stupid parent you must be.

    My Three year old loves watching CBeebies and it doesn't bother her in the slightest when she sees this presenter.

  14. laughing_badger

    Re: Childhood Erosian

    "Controversial I know - but I believe small children should be presented with a utopian version of the world."

    An odd viewpoint, since it would require you to segregate your own child from any contact with other children until they were old enough to avoid spoiling the other childrens 'utopia' - no childcare, nursary, junior school etc. depending on where you draw the line. Or would it be different if it were your child who was missing a limb...

  15. Andy Law

    Inappropriate support

    I would think that all those parents who 'spontaneously put their hands up to state their support for Cerrie?' should be censured for making an inappropriate gesture in the circumstances.

    Unless they just put one hand up.

    Mines the one with the empty pocket on one side.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Hands off

    My kids were curious about her arm and we explained it to them. Now they understand.

    Plus Cerrie is hot xx

  17. Bassey

    Bedding in time

    At first I thought this new pair just needed a bit of "bedding in" time but, after nearly three weeks, they just seem to be crap. My little-uns don't even seem to have noticed the lack of arm. They just don't seem to pay as much attention as they do when Sid and Andy are on.

    CBeebies world does seem to be rather over-populated with the disabled though. Ballamorey, Me Too!, Something Special, Mr Maker etc. I'm all for diversity but if Cbeebies were representative of the real world one in four of us would have a major disability!

  18. Anonymous Coward


    Totally agree. It's adults who bestow their fears onto kids.

    How many kids are scared of the dentist, even before their first vist?

    Or get scared of the bogey man lurking under their beds?

    My nephew and niece lived in a leafy, all white populated village. They then visited Wolvehampton and met their first "black" person. They stared, wide eyed, but were they scared? No. Thier mom explained that lot of people have different clolour skin. They listened and then were full of questions. The woman concered was more than willing to answer any questions they had.

    That was it, end of story. They now understood, no racial hatred, nothing.

    No if their mom had gone, Shhh be quiet and sit down. it may of been a totally different outcome.

    It's the bigoted adults that should be locked away never to be seen, not the presenter!

  19. N Silver badge

    @ Kenny Millar

    Stupid parents - I agree entirely.

  20. Anonymous Coward


    I was once refused a job at a McDonalds by some ignorant, troll faced, oil soaked witch because I have third degree burns to my neck. She said I might put people off the food!!!!


    Hopefully she fell into the deep fat fryer and now works as a stand in for the phantom of the opera or a live exhibit at the London Dungeon.


    Flames for obvious reasons.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What a bunch of.....

    These complaining dipsticks should be forced to go round in a wheelchair for six months and see if their attitude changes.

    Being a wheelchair user myself (I have Cerebral Palsy that mainly affects my lower limbs I cannot walk very far) and these kind of people make me sick.

    She was born without part of her arm, she isn't stupid and nor am I but these dipsticks must be!

    Why hasn't the Daily crap been banned as that is all it spreads.

  22. tony72
    IT Angle


    Kids today have no taste. I'd do her, arm or no arm.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not disabled

    I know someone who similarly was born with the same condition ... I gather when being interviewed for jobs the conversation would eventually be steered around to the "... and do you think you'll be able to cope with your disability?" question. Her reply was "Actually I was born like this so I'm not disabled, I'm deformed" ... which normally stopped the questioning in its tracks.

  24. Anonymous Coward

    Upsetting children?

    I rather doubt that. it will, however, upset parents who will have to actually engage their children in a sensible conversation, rather than plonking them in front of the gogglebox. Why are they letting their children watch TV anyway?

    Children don't give two shits and will (horror of horrors) be quite up-front about the whole thing.

    Parents of Britain - you are responsibility abdicating morons!

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "My three year old boy loves her. he does however, wear a kitchen roll tube on his arm when she comes on as if to hide his hand, so he is aware of her disability..."

    This kid will grow up to be a top bloke.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I love that..The Daily Hate.

    In terms of the parents who voiced their "concerns" I await their next comments on Andy Peters and Sidney Sloane etc and how they frighten their kids.

    I thought this gem they dug up spoke volumes about the rag

    'This new presenter is c*** - face facts - but because she has a disability then she was given a job. [It is] positive discrimination in my books.'

    Personally, I think the journo and the poster of the comment are c****, and as far as the presenter is concerned...lets just say...I would.

  27. jeffrey

    Whats more shocking

    Is the amount of sensible, rational and supportive comments being left on the daily fail website! All the regular readers/idiots/fascits (delete as applicable) must have been away for the day, leaving just the sensible people to leave comments

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    @Childhood Erosian

    "...I believe small children should be presented with a utopian version of the world."

    You're a muppet, then. At what exact point are you going to enlighten them? Isn't it going to be a damn sight harder for them to have to deal with the life-long disappointment that you created than just growing up to understand things as they really are? The answer is "yes." Children are far more adaptable than adults in that regard.

  29. RW

    What Michelle Obama has to say

    Quoth Mrs. First Lady Obama: "small kids . . . don't need their lives to be easy. They're kids"

    On reading her comment this morning, my opinion of Mrs. Obama, thitherto indifferent, changed very much for the better. It doesn't sound like the Obama girls are "precious snowflakes". Instead, they are being prepared for adult life, as, indeed, they should be.

    My interest has vastly increased in the ultimate fate of the precious snowflakes of the world. You know — the kids whose helicopter parents shield them from everything not part of some debilitating fantasy of childhood. I imagine many of them will end up social cripples given their inability as adults to cope with the harsh realities of life.

    Doing chores in the White House is one reality; so is accepting that, yes, some people have only one arm.

    Scary my eye! Teaching a child to fear ordinary things that don't fit some mythical vision of childhood comes very close to being a form of child abuse.

    ObMoanAboutNuLabour: Just like Health and Safety under the nannyship of NuLabour: trying to protect the citizens from the least little potentially difficult or tricky aspect of life. "Strength through adversity, comrades!" is definitely not a NuLabour motto.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    I watched cbeebies a while back...

    ...with my nephew, and learned sign language from a very very camp man called mr timbles, or something like that. And who said learning stopped in adulthood.

    It wasn't the most useful sign language though, unless I intend to have a conversation about horses, saddles and reins.

  31. Mike


    Is her favourite game according to her profile page :)

  32. Hedley Phillips

    More worried about her singing disability

    The "time to say goodnight" song is always cringeworthy.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "Disability campaigner Clair Lewis said: “As far as we are aware, just nine complaints were received – and these have been turned into a national news story. What about the thousands of parents who have spontaneously put their hands up to state their support for Cerrie?"

    You mean they are offering to donate their own body parts to her so she can keep the job?

  34. Eric the Girl
    Paris Hilton

    Disability on CBeebies

    Well, seeing as my son's favourite CBeebies shows are in the night garden and something special, I'd have to say that Cerrie having one arm hasn't phased him.

    However, I do agree with the previous poster that her co-presenter sounds like he hasn't quite got the lines memorised...

    Paris Hilton 'cause she might have more of a clue than the daily hate

  35. LaeMi Qian Silver badge

    Re-read the dailt failarticle...

    ...but replace the word 'disabled' with 'colored' and 'missing arm' with 'dark skin'. Here is the mentality of the 9 complainers.

    'Scary' my missing left buttock. Barbie is more disabled/deformed (waistline that, if translated to a real woman, would result in death).


    Back when I was a primary teacher I there was a lad in my school with a foreleg missing. I more than once had to tell him off for trying to kick people in the head - from a distance (he would loosen the straps and 'kick' his prosthetic off into the air at people). All the other kids thought it was a really cool thing to be able to do.

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton


    As a parent I am more concerned about the crack fuelled ramblings of the lunatics behind "in the night garden" than I am about a presenter who is "limb challenged" or whatever the PC term is.

    Kids are curious, its why they get into trouble, its the parents who cant deal with stuff like this who are the problem.

    As for the 9 complainers, sterilise them and take there kids into care, problem solved.

  37. Andy Lamb

    All I Know Is...

    That both her and Alex (And Andy for that matter) aren't anywhere near as good at presenting compared to Chris and Pui.

    Though this nonesense about Cerrie scaring children?!?! Are these parents going to bubble wrap their kids from the posibilities of real life until they leave for bording school? All it will do is breed a generation of xenephobes - if it's different, cower in fear until it leaves...

  38. Paul Murphy

    Whatever happened to Chris and Pui..

    Apparently they are working on new material which will be making an appearance later in the year:

    My disabled son loves Something Special (which teaches a disabled form of sign language, not BSL) and several of the other programs, he's gone off the night garden though.

    I agree that her singing is not exactly the best, but then the two presenters are both rather err dull compared to Chris and Pui (sorry if you're reading this) which is a shame, but maybe it's early days.

    Anyway as far as stupid parents go there are lots of them about, the BNP membership has to come from somewhere.

    Off to the daily hate to see what I can add in terms of bored support, since this shouldn't be an issue in the first place.


  39. Steve

    Missing the real issue

    The BBC is clearly pandering to the millions of scroungers who enter this country every year who lounge around using the services that we provide for years while refusing to get jobs or pay taxes like any decent citizen.

    These bastards don't even pay for a TV licence and yet for some reason the BBC sees fit to provide them with their own channel.

  40. DAN*tastik
    Paris Hilton

    @ Comments on Child Erosion

    Am I the only one who considered the possibility of that one being a sarcastic comment?




  41. Anonymous Coward

    @Hands off

    Couldn't agree more - my kids can't see the big deal. Explained the fuss to them and their response was 'O, that's just so stupid'.

    And defo agree that she's a hottie.

    Re: "My three year old boy loves her. he does however, wear a kitchen roll tube on his arm when she comes on as if to hide his hand, so he is aware of her disability...". I can't quite get my head around whether this kid is empathising or not - hope a career in social work isn't beckoning.

    @"I watched cbeebies a while back... " - definitely agree Mr Tumbles was a great segment. Think it should have been in the mainstream to teach sign language - it's so darned useful in a noisy machine hall (IT angle!). Plus my local primary taught some of the common signs to my two kids - and they really enjoyed it.

    IT angle for the story - that it's nice to see the net used to refute the excrement thrown by one tabloid toilet-paper substitute.

  42. Jason

    Bring back Chris and Pui!!!

    Dont care about her disability - I wanna know what happened to the legends that were Chris and Pui!!!

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton


    Come off it, kids never made fun or were shocked by Joey Deacon back in the 70s so why on earth would anyone expect today's politically aware young people to react like that to this woman? Just look at the way they reacted to Wendy Richards' "they all look the same to me" comments or Jade Goody's harsh words to Shilpa Shetty.

    They're politically correct to perfection so they're never going to have a problem with a one armed news reader. It's the old fuddy duddies who grew up exposed to statements such as "The Germans do not like the cold steel up them" or Al Jolson's Minstrels who are making a fuss over what they *imagine* young people to say and think. And that's because *their* minds are poluted.

    And I guarantee you that Noel Edmonds wouldn't hesitate to do a Deal or No Deal one-armed special to prove to people how irrelevant the matter is.

    Paris, because she'd be perfectly happy to have Joey Deacon as her British best friend.

  44. Clint Sharp
    Paris Hilton

    What a bunch of cnuts...

    Idiots, the 9 complainees should be had up on grounds of discrimination, it's just unfortunate that they can't be charged with stupidity.

    Oh and Cerrie is hot...

    Paris,she might do a better job of raising kids...

  45. Davey Bee

    Daily Hate???

    What's this crap about the "Daily Hate"? I've now looked up the relevant articles in the Daily Mail, and it seems to me that the newspaper is totally against those parents who have complained. As indeed it should be.

    Moving on from that, the strange thing is that some idiots are so sensitive about disability now. I was a little kid in the 50's and I was well acquainted with these things: it was quite common to see people who had suffered disability or disfigurement, and my parents explained to me from a very young age that these people had been "hurt in the war" (and that included some people who, looking back, clearly had mental problems) and I wasn't to think that they were odd or frightening. OK I only had a hazy idea of what a war was, but I knew about disability even before I went to school.

    Parents shouldn't hide their children away from things that aren't cutesy. They will have to handle life, and part of that is understanding that people do have differences.

    P.S. If you're going to label any paper the Daily Hate, can I nominate the Scottish Daily Record (sister paper of the Daily Mirror)? Even in their article about the death of David Cameron's son, they still got in the sneer "Wealthy, Eton-educated Cameron..."

  46. Christoph Silver badge

    What has happened to this place?

    34 comments, and nobody has pointed out that the complainers don't have a leg to stand on?

  47. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  48. Anonymous Coward

    Personal experience

    I lost my right eye several years ago to a tumor. I absolutely love it when a little kid sees me in a public place and asks "what happened to your eye?" The look on the parents' faces are priceless!! It's like they think I don't know I'm different-looking. I usually just smile and tell the kid something they'll understand, depending on how old they are. I've never once seen a kid act afraid without being prompted by a parent, and I'm much scarier-looking than somebody who's just short an arm.

  49. David Barrett Silver badge


    Read the mail do we?

    Now I have 2 reasons to watch cbeebies, Sarah Jane and Cerrie!!!

  50. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    stupid parents

    Parents like this remind of the stupid cow who didn't want her kids to play with my Deaf son 'because he could't speak properly'. They're cretins and their children will probably grow up to hate them and they'll end up dying all alone surrounded by their own excrement. Mwahaha.

  51. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    On the other hand...

    In the picture they ran in the Independent, the lighting in the shot was far scarier than any missing appendages - a bottom-lit frankenstein effect that was decidedly not flattering. I'm sure there was a more flattering publicity shot around, but they were doing a bit of a Winston Silcott on her.

    The real problem is parents - they just keep having kids. No breeding > no kids > no need for Cbeebies > no complaints > licence fee gets cheaper > fewer ASBO toting yoof and pregnant 12 year olds. Win win all round. Very NuLab

  52. Rocco

    Missing the point (pun not intended)

    This Cerrie and the new bloke would still be wooden and unengaging, regardless of how many arms they had between them.

    Plus, has anyone noticed the end of her arm looks a bit like a.... Fruity!

    Mine's the one with "Going straight to hell" on the back.

  53. James

    A Grip, get one

    You mean they might actually have to do some parenting rather than sitting their spawn infront of the idiot box and waddling off to annoy someone else?

    as the internet so eloquently puts it : OH NOES

  54. Allan Dyer Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Going out on a limb

    @DAN*tastik @Child Erosion

    "Am I the only one who considered the possibility of that one being a sarcastic comment?"

    No, twigged it right away... unless someone's let in a Daily Mail reader!

    @LaeMi Qian

    "there was a lad in my school with a foreleg missing"

    are you sure he wasn't a kid? Human's forelimbs are called arms...

    Cool trick he had, though.

  55. Tom

    @David Barrett

    I'm not sure, but I *think* Steve is referring to kids, and is therefore joking.

  56. Dr Patrick J R Harkin

    What not have a presenter without an arm?

    They have several without a brain.

  57. teacake

    @AC 17:45

    "Come off it, kids never made fun or were shocked by Joey Deacon back in the 70s"

    What school did *you* go to? Everyone I know got years of playground material from Joey Deacon, and that documentary about the kid with Tourette's. Not proud of it, but that's how most kids are.

  58. Anonymous Coward


    At what point did it become sensible to listen to people who's only qualification is that they have spawned?

    In my experience parents can be the most irrational, reactionary, illogical grouping within society. In fact its not until their spawn become adults do they appear to have developed sage wisdom tendencies and thats only as much sage as a normal person.

  59. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hmmmmmmmm Really

    Neurotic Parents raise Neurotic Children.

    Journalists masturbate themselves over anything.

  60. John Browne

    From my own experience.

    When I joined ny junior school, aged 7, one of the teachers had a similar arm to Cerrie's. We were interested, sure, but upset, no. He was a nice guy and a good teacher, and we liked him. We soon ignored his 'disability', except when it caused him inconvenience; we then watched how he worked around it, or we helped him. We learned to accept another's disability.

    This had another benefit; when a new boy with a similar arm joined the school, he had no more problems than any other 'New Kid on the Block'. In other schools he could have been bullied, but not in our school.

    This was an ordinary primary school in Birmingham (UK) 1955-56. Nothing special.

    Bottom line is that we should let children know about disabilities as soon as they can understand the concept. Any of us could acquire a disability; after all, how good a driver are you? Not just your car, your body.

    Keep going, Cerrie, and ignore the tabloids.

  61. Bad Pritt

    RE: Twaddle.

    Actually, research has shown that human actually are genetically conditioned to be (somewhat) afraid of spiders. As a parent you can make your children overcome the instinct though.

    More info at

    That said, I don't think there's an evolutionary reason to be afraid of people short a forearm. Rather the opposite, really.

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