A FRIEND of comic Brian Conley who broke down while taking part in a reality TV show has questioned why he was allowed to take part in it.

Jeanette McLeish Hursey is a long-time friend of the funny man, who has battled alcoholism and depression, and has blasted producers for putting him on TV show I’m a Celebrity, Get Me out of Here.

“As soon as I saw him on the show, I said ‘that’s not the Brian I know. There is something wrong’,” said the mum from Copford.

“I think the question needs to be asked why did the producers let him go on the show when he was clearly having trouble?

“What checks do they make before they put people in that position?”

Mrs Mcleish Hursey, who has known Conley for 18 years, was part of his touring group in the 1990s and attended the star’s wedding in 1996, added: “He is just a normal person, that’s what I love about him. I really hope he is okay.”

Prior to leaving the jungle for medical reasons, he and the other contestants have been surviving on just rice and beans and have had to cope with horrific weather.

An ITV spokesman said: “Brian Conley has left the jungle for medical reasons.”