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The Apprentice: 89% disagree with Lord Sugar’s flatpack skeleton decision

Felipe’s flatpack, paper skeleton was disallowed in Lord Sugar’s boardroom, but in our online poll, readers vote the self-assembly product should have been given the thumbs up

Published: Thursday, 4th December 2014 at 9:49 am

Last night, Lord Sugar set his Apprentice candidates the task of buying items on a shopping list for the best price possible. Among the products to be bought was a diamond, a piece of old rope, seeds, and what turned out to be a much-discussed "Human skeleton, specifications: Full-sized, anatomical skeleton, minimum 150cm tall".


While Team Summit spent £230 on a free-standing skeleton they named Stevie, Felipe on Team Tenacity had the idea of buying a self-assembly flatpack, paper skeleton for just £14. Felipe was certain it fit the brief. He had confirmation from the “expert” in the shop that it was “anatomical” and, while in pieces, did (or at least could) meet the height requirements. Felipe was backed by his team, who agreed the brief itself didn’t say the skeleton needed to be fully built.

It was a “roll of the dice” Felipe – a lawyer by trade – admitted to yesterday and it ended up being disallowed by Lord Sugar in the boardroom. “You are taking the p*** aren’t you? You are having a laugh with me now aren’t you? That is not a bleeding skeleton,” Sugar said.

“Someone must think they’re being clever,” he added. The team – who initially appeared to have won the task – were given a £310 fine after the steam-rolled skeleton was disallowed and therefore lost. Unsurprisingly, Felipe was then fired.

But when polled by overnight, 89.05% of 2,959 voters thought that Lord Sugar was wrong to disallow the self-assembly skeleton.

“His brief wasn’t specific enough, he got what he asked for but he didn’t define what he wanted properly,” wrote one reader. “Lord Sugar is wrong on this one,” argued another – “Try putting what you mean in the specification so we don’t have to be clairvoyant.”

A total of 10.95% (324) were on Lord Sugar’s side with one reader noting, “The description says ‘Human skeleton’. There’s no room for interpretation. Humans do not have paper bones therefore Uncle Alan was right,” although they added – “they should have disallowed the plastic one the other team brought back, too.”

Felipe says he stands by his decision explaining that “it matches the description of what he asked for perfectly”, but concedes that ultimately it’s Lord Sugar’s money and so his decision.

Read our full interview with Felipe here.


The Apprentice continues next Wednesday at 9:00pm on BBC1


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