Kirsty Allsopp sparks heated Twitter debate about whether it's unhygienic to have a washing machine in the kitchen

Marie Claire Dorking
Kirstie Allsopp has sparked a Twitter debate about keeping washing machines in the kitchen [Photo: PA]
Kirstie Allsopp has sparked a Twitter debate about keeping washing machines in the kitchen [Photo: PA]

Kirstie Allsopp has sparked a heated Twitter debate about whether or not it’s hygienic to have a washing machine in the kitchen.

The spark was ignited when the Location, Location, Location’ presenter replied to a journalist’s tweet about how Americans find it strange that Brits put their washing machines in the kitchen.

“Americans in our office are always confused by the British habit of putting washing machines in kitchens and view this as disgusting,” he wrote.

To which Kirstie, 45 replied: “It is disgusting, my life’s work is in part dedicated to getting washing machines out of the kitchen.”

But the presenter’s comment didn’t go down well and were met with a flurry of protest, with some Twitter users accusing the star of being “out of touch.”

“Why is it disgusting everything gets washed in kitchen, we don’t all have a utility room,” one user wrote.

“Most of us don’t have the luxury of an alternative,” another added.

Asked where washing machines should be put instead if a homeowner has no separate utility room, Kirstie said: “Bathroom, hall cupboard, airing cupboard”.

That remark prompted yet more debate on Twitter, and Kirstie was forced to clarify: “IF POSSIBLE having a washing machine out of the kitchen frees up space, if not possible no big deal.”

She also felt the need to point out that she was joking in the first place.

“Clue that this *was* a humorous debate was in the phrase “life’s work”. Who the effing hell has laundry relocation as their life’s work?” she wrote after the furore.

While also replying to another Twitter user: “Please note there is a degree of humour in this debate, no need to take it quite so seriously.”

And later Kirstie was still responding to people’s comments on the subject.

“To the people who say I tweet about controversial issues on purpose I really did NOT see this tsunami coming,” she wrote.

Despite many disagreeing with the TV presenter, some fans stepped in to defend Kirstie’s view on keeping washing machines out of the kitchen.

“In our tiny two bed flat, we put ours in our spare room because the kitchen is tiny and needed max space. Made total sense,” one man wrote.

“We sacked off our downstairs toilet (under stairs) and stacked washer/drier in there. Infinitely more useful #washergate,” another added.

“Finally – I have never understood how food prep area = dirty socks. Bathroom, hall cupboard, airing cupboard. Never kitchen. Never,” another user wrote.

Whether she was joking or not, was Kirstie right to question whether it’s hygienic to keep washing machines in the kitchen? We spoke to the cleaning experts from Helpling.co.uk to get their take on the debate.

“Having your washing machine in the kitchen isn’t unhygienic as long as you don’t place your dirty socks on the chopping board ;),” explains Roxanna Pelka from Helpling.co.uk.

“More important is that you clean your washing machine regularly as it is a real germ incubator itself, especially if it doesn’t get cleaned with every washing cycle. To avoid the spread of bacteria and smells, pour 50g baking soda into the drum and fill up the detergent drawer with 50ml of vinegar. After only one empty run, the now lime-free drum smells fresh again!”

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