She has covered general elections, recorded a diary from her hospital bed after cancer treatment, and been showered with bugs in a Welsh castle, but Victoria Derbyshire’s Achilles’ heel turns out to be… high heels.
The BBC News presenter had what she deemed “a slight wardrobe malfunction” on Thursday morning, when she couldn’t get her shoes on in time to present the morning news.
As the 9am bulletin began on the BBC News channel, Victoria was seen in the studio background bending over and muttering “Oh my God!” as she grappled with the 4.5in (11.40cm) black tasselled heels.
But this was no Cinderella moment. In fact, momentarily, Victoria must have felt like one of the ugly sisters as she grappled with her heels.
What’s more, she had no idea the audience could both see and hear her.
“I didn’t realise the camera would see me bending over. And it was so quiet – I wasn’t thinking about the microphone.”
Victoria was just trying to get her shoes on.
“I was trying to bend down to put them on, but there was nothing to lean on,” she said, as she recalled her rising panic at not being able to get her feet in the stilettos.
“I managed the first one – but then you have to do the second!”
Meanwhile the camera panned to an empty set.
But the challenge was nothing for someone who, mere months ago, was negotiating the corridors of a derelict castle dressed in a giant, fluffy robin suit on I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here.
And seconds later, Victoria was in position and – after a brief apology – the news began, almost seamlessly.
Her social media accounts have since been flooded with sympathetic messages, many praising her professionalism and composure – others who just loved the shoes.
Vernon Kay and TV critic Scott Bryan are among those who commented, while fellow newsreaders shared her pain.
“I’ve had more messages about that than anything else ever,” said Victoria, speaking hours after the shoe trauma.
Did she consider not putting her shoes on, but delivering the news barefoot instead?
“It crossed my mind, but it didn’t feel right,” says the journalist.
Still, it seems like those shoes are now back in the closet, at least as far as work is concerned.
“I’m not going to wear those shoes again,” she says, firmly. Next stop, Ebay?