SAS Who Dares Wins star Ollie Ollerton has revealed his ‘shock and disappointment’ at being axed from the survival reality show after five years.
The military veteran, 48, admitted that after ‘threatening his security’ as a former member of the Special Forces, he expected ‘loyalty’ from the programme in return.
Ollie told the Sun he was dropped from the show in an apparent ‘diversity drive’ and will be replaced in the next series, which he had already carved out time for.
He said: ‘Five years ago we put our heads above the parapet for the first time ever – threatening our security as former members of the Special Forces – to bring that show to fruition. I expected that loyalty to be reciprocated. It clearly wasn’t.
He has been a stalwart on the show alongside DS Ant Middleton, Jason ‘Foxy’ Fox and Mark ‘Billy’ Billingham since its inception in 2015.
As a team they pushed civilians and celebrities to their mental and physical limits with a series of military tests over the course of a week.
Ollie admitted that it would have been easier to get the push for doing something wrong, rather than the circumstances he left under.
A Channel 4 spokesperson told MailOnline: ‘Ollie continues to be associated with the SAS: Who Dares Wins Brand as a DS for SAS: Who Dares Wins Australia.
‘Ollie has made an exceptional contribution to SAS: Who Dares Wins and the expertise and experience he brought to the Directing Staff team has been much valued. We wish him great success with his future projects.’
It was previously reported that SAS Who Dares Wins sacked Ollie in a bid to make the show more diverse.
Ollie insisted this would be hard to achieve, and said: ‘There’s a low amount of ethnic minorities who apply to get in the military, then the number of people who get through Special Forces selection is low.
‘Then you’ve another issue, getting people who want to be on TV, because a lot of Special Forces out there will not do that show. Never. Not a chance.’
Ollie said that other instructors on the show threatened to follow him out of the door, however he claimed he persuaded them to stay on without him.
The TV personality, who is currently filming SAS: Who Dares Wins Australia, joined the Marines at 18 and toured Northern Ireland and Iraq before he joined the Special Boat Services.
Elsewhere, former Special Forces trooper Ant is facing the sack as Chief Cadet of the Royal Navy – but top brass have yet to pluck up the courage to tell him.
Navy chiefs have hatched a plot to remove the SAS: Who Dares Wins frontman after he called Black Lives Matter campaigners ‘absolute scum’ and urged the public to ignore official advice over coronavirus.
Admiralty bosses hope to persuade Mr Middleton – who has apologised for his remarks – to resign from the honorary position to avoid a public row. But if he refuses to step down, he will be formally dismissed.
And perhaps with their personal safety in mind, the defence chiefs intend to telephone Mr Middleton rather than speak face to face with the 39-year-old TV hardman.
The manoeuvring, revealed in defence policy documents seen by The Mail on Sunday, comes just nine months after Mr Middleton’s appointment as Chief Cadet.
In November last year, the TV star and author announced he was honoured to take up the role, explaining how he intended to inspire hundreds of cadets aged from nine to 17.
His appointment was seen as a boost to the profile of the Volunteer Cadet Corps (VCC). Since then he has joined cadets on challenging military exercises and passed on knowledge gleaned from 15 years of service in elite frontline units, including the Royal Marines and the Special Boat Service.
But privately senior officers have grown increasingly concerned by his controversial comments on social media.
Only last month, Mr Middleton provoked a backlash with a now-deleted tweet criticising Black Lives Matter. And in April, he was forced to apologise after an online rant about Government advice to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.
As countries around the world ordered lockdowns, Mr Middleton insisted he was too strong to be affected by Covid-19.
He urged his fans to ‘get out there’ and promised to continue cuddling strangers at airports and shaking hands. Now, Navy chiefs have decided he is not the right person to lead the VCC’s 650 boys and girls.
They plan to give him their ultimatum – resign or be sacked – this week. The policy document says: ‘The views he has expressed are not in keeping with the values that the VCC aspire to.’
Mr Middleton’s life in Civvy Street has been marked by controversy. The ex-SBS man received a 14-month jail term after he assaulted police officers outside an Essex nightclub in 2013.
Last night the Ministry of Defence said: ‘We are not prepared to comment as this is a private matter between Ant Middleton and the Volunteer Cadet Corps.’
Mr Middleton did not respond to a request for comment.