Celebrity Big Brother did not breach any regulations over controversial scenes screened last summer featuring housemates Roxanne Pallett and Ryan Thomas, Ofcom has ruled.
Ofcom had received more than 25,000 complains, making it the most complained about show on TV in the UK last year.
The heated scenes centred on Roxanne Pallett’s allegation that fellow housemate Ryan Thomas had “deliberately” and “repeatedly” physically assaulted her during the 22nd series.
Complaints expressed concern that the programme had continued to broadcast Roxanne’s allegations against Ryan, at potential risk to his career and reputation. There were also worries from the public about Roxanne’s wellbeing and whether she should have remained in the house.
On the topic of Roxanne’s mental distress, the channel said that from the point at which she had made the first allegation until she left the house, the independent programme psychiatrist was across the situation.
“At no stage were concerns raised about her mental health or her fitness to remain in the house,” the broadcaster said.
It stated that while CBB was known “to deal with controversial and difficult situations and confrontations”, its prime consideration was “the safety and welfare of the housemates”.
The broadcaster described the incident as “unprecedented”, stating that Ryan and Roxanne’s welfare was given “serious consideration at the highest levels” of both Endemol and Channel 5.
It said it had in place detailed protocols that it reviewed and updated prior to the start of every series.
Ofcom concluded that while these programmes focused on a highly sensitive incident that had potential to cause offence, the programmes were not in breach of Rule 2.3 of the Code.