Watch: Loose Women welcomes back live audience for first time since March 2020
Loose Women has finally welcomed a live studio audience back for the first time since March 2020 – nearly two-and- a half years after the last time fans were at the show.
The ITV daytime chat show shook off the last of its coronavirus restrictions to filming on Monday as rows of fans were shown sitting in the studio applauding Christine Lampard opening the episode.
Live audiences were banned from the studio in March 2020 as a response to the COVID pandemic and have been kept out of the Loose Women studio ever since.
Other filming restrictions that had already been scrapped included sitting the panellists more than two metres apart, keeping some panellists at home on video link, and getting guests to call in via video.
As she welcomed the show's fans back inside, Lampard said: "Hello and welcome to your Monday Loose Women live and we’re not alone - our audience are back!"
The audience applauded as Lampard continued: "It’s so lovely to see you all - you’re all shiny, happy people, it feels great! We need that today!"
She was joined on Monday's show by co-stars Brenda Edwards, Janet Street Porter and Gloria Hunniford.
ITV is also encouraging fans of the show to apply for tickets to be in the audience now that the studio has opened its doors again, with applications at https://www.sroaudiences.com/application.asp?show_id=1038.
The coronavirus pandemic has fuelled many a heated Loose Women debate over the past two and a half years, with Denise Welch protesting at lockdown rules that stopped her visiting her dying father in hospital, and strong opinions voiced on both sides about the vaccine and the Government's handling of the pandemic.
Carol McGiffin was also criticised for comments minimising the effects of the virus, claiming that it had "a 99+% survival rate" and calling lockdown restrictions "largely unnecessary".
Loose Women continues on weekdays at 12.30pm on ITV.
Watch: Carol McGiffin and Nicola Sturgeon face off in heated Loose Women debate