Teen Joshua speaks ‘Frankie’ about bullying for TV series .

Thursday, 31 August 2017

Teen Joshua speaks ‘Frankie’ about bullying for TV series  . thumbnail Joshua with Frankie Bridge. The Richhill teenager is to appear in Frankie’s Channel 5 series, Celeb Trolls. Image courtesy of Joshua/Twitter

A TEENAGER from Richhill - who has his own YouTube channel - is to star on a television programme about bullying.

Joshua Hewitt (19) will appear on an episode of Channel 5's Celeb Trolls: We're Coming to Get You, a series fronted by former Saturdays' singer, Frankie Bridge this Thursday (August 31).

Each week the show features public figures as they attempt to track down their online bullies or 'trolls'.

It also, however, features bullying survivors like Joshua who speak candidly about their own personal experiences.

The series has featured Rebecca Vardy, who is married to premier footballer Jamie Vardy, Nicola McClean and X-Factor contestant Sam Bailey.

The production company behind the series, Popkorn TV reached out to the Richhill vlogger, whose channel The Hewitt Collective has clocked up over 235,000 views and counting, via Twitter at the start of this year -much to Joshua's surprise.

"They reached out because they had saw my anti-bullying campaign work with a charity called Fixers, and they got in touch," he revealed.

They then flew Joshua out to London in January where he met with up Frankie for the interview. "She was lovely, so down to earth and spent a lot of the time chatting to me off-camera.

"The show follows celebrities tracking down their trolls, but my part is just about sharing my own experiences, and to be honest it wasn't too bad. I don't like going over the past but if it's for the right reasons, like for YouTube and television to share with others who may be being targeted online, then I'm okay with sharing it."

Joshua's channel is his own platform and outlet to discuss his experiences with bullying. When he was younger he was targeted by some of his peers due to having Tourette's Syndrome, a condition that features involuntary tics.

With nearly nine months past since he filmed his segment for the show, Joshua has had to keep shtum on his upcoming appearance, something that he's found a bit difficult! "I've been dropping hints online," he explains.

In true YouTuber fashion, though, uploaded a video explaining his involvement on Celeb Trolls, breaking the news to his subcribers. He also had a message for his "haters, all those people who bullied me years ago";

"Thank you so much, because this is where you've got me to." And again, as he spoke to the Ulster Gazette, he stressed that while being bullied was a horrible experience, he can now look back at it from a more positive place. "I'd thank them [the bullies]. They taught me the hard way to grow up," he said.

Joshua also has a message to anyone who is being targeted by trolls or bullies; "Don't give up, always keep believing in yourself and it will get better."

Joshua will appear on Celeb Trolls this Thursday (August 31) at 10pm.


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