Dame Arlene Phillips has revealed the I’m A Celebrity contestants were not allowed to access their phones, read the news or contact their families while they were removed from Gwrych Castle during Storm Arwen.
The former Strictly Come Dancing judge, who at 78 was the oldest contestant to take part in the ITV series, left the show on Sunday night after receiving the fewest public votes.
It came days after extreme weather conditions caused production difficulties at the set in North Wales, with three live shows cancelled and the stars taken from the camp as a precaution.
Speaking to Good Morning Britain, Dame Arlene said they had been kept in isolation during their time outside of the castle.
She said: “We definitely didn’t get our phones back. I wish. The only thing we had to watch was Netflix. No news, no family contact, nothing.
“We spent a day in the castle. We didn’t know where we were going to go, what was going to happen. And then we were taken into isolation.
“We all had separate houses and there was some food waiting for us. We were totally isolated.”
She added: “It was very strange because you are out of the castle but you are still in isolation.
“For me it was great because I managed to get delivered my Josh Wood (hair dye) and I could do my roots. That was the biggest thrill of a lifetime, to go back without my roots showing. It was a good thing for me.
“And then we went back into the castle we just immediately got on with the job in hand, getting everything prepared. It was cold, we had to make the fire, get on with it.”
Dame Arlene described her time on the show as “an adventure of a lifetime” but admitted it had been more challenging than she had expected
The ITV show has been on air since November 21 and has had an eventful few weeks with intruders removed on two separate occasions and the celebrity contestants evacuated from camp.
TV presenter Richard Madeley also had to exit the show early after he was taken to hospital as a precaution when he fell ill – and having broken the Covid bubble, was not able to return.