You would assume that a journalist who contributes to talkRADIO, The Telegraph, Sky News and The BBC would have a pretty good understanding of words.
However, for Julia Hartley-Brewer’s sake, let’s assume that her knowledge is lacking when it comes to terms for sex offenders.
Live on BBC News on Monday night, Hartley-Brewer branded the England football team a “bunch of overpaid nonces”.
— Robert Summerscales (@robsummerscales) June 28, 2016
For those of you, like Julia, who perhaps didn’t know, nonce is a word used to describe a person convicted of a sexual offence, especially against a child.
Henry Bonsu, who was sat to Hartley-Brewer’s left when she made the offending comment, immediately recognised that this was totally inappropriate.
Bonsu quickly chimed in to say: “That is terrible. I divorce myself, I detach myself completely from what you just said.”
But presenter Clive Myrie, clearly amused by Hartley-Brewer’s slip, went on to repeat her slur.
In the last few minutes, Hartley-Brewer has taken to Twitter to explain the whole palava.
It turns out she meant to say ponces! Oops…
Whoops. Last night on @bbcnews I accidentally called the England team “overpaid nonces”. I of course meant “overpaid ponces”. Sorry.
— Julia Hartley-Brewer (@JuliaHB1) June 28, 2016
We’re pretty sure ponce isn’t on the approved list of BBC nouns either.