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Thursday, 17 August, 2000, 14:47 GMT 15:47 UK
Big Brother's 'Nasty Nick' rumbled
Big Brother's Nick
In the doghouse: Nick Bateman
Big Brother contestants have rumbled "nasty" Nick Bateman's scheming against them - and have rounded on him in a confrontation over his tactics.

He had built up the trust of his fellow contestants in the Channel 4 surveillance programme, which is following seven people sealed from the outside world in a camera-filled house.


I've worked in a very aggressive environment where people will stitch you up to further their own careers

Nick to the housemates
But they accused him of being "sick" for planning his tactics to win the show's 70,000 prize, and of smuggling a pen and paper into the house, which is banned under the programme's rules.

He has already packed his bags to leave - but has been convinced by Melanie to wait and speak to "Big Brother", the show's referee.

A spokesman said he would be punished for writing the notes, and added: "On a more important level, he is now going to have to face his housemates now they know him for what he is."

However, Nick has told the housemates he plans to leave on Friday night.

The contestants held a kangaroo court to challenge the embarrassed financial worker, with Liverpudlian builder Craig telling him: "I just thought you were geniune. I was misled and you made me look a fool.

Darren
Darren: Rounded on Nick
"You're making it hard for me to believe what anyone else has said."

'Sick'

Contestants are banned from discussing their nominations for who should leave each week, but Nick admitted he had shown the names he had written down to two other contestants.

Craig and Bolton textile worker Nichola have been nominated this week, and late on Wednesday night Thomas let slip to Craig that Nick had voted against him.

Craig told Darren, and they then searched Nick's suitcase, and found his papers.

Darren asked him: "Do you really, really want 70,000? Is that why you want to win?"

Nichola joined Darren in calling him "sick" as Nick conceded: "I've done something wrong."

The contestants agreed that they could not trust him, and Melanie said: "I think you should walk."


No-one is going to trust you - you might as well take your stuff and go

Darren to Nick
Darren added: "No-one is going to trust you - you might as well take your stuff and go."

Thursday afternoon saw Nick attempt to explain himself, calling the house "a very competitive environment".

"I've worked in a very aggressive environment where people will stitch you up to further their own careers," he said.

But after 10 years in the City he said "it was time for a change".

Craig
Marked for eviction: Craig
Nichola said: "I've nothing good to say about the programme. They've made rules which have been broken."

Over the past four weeks viewers have seen Nick gain the confidence of the other contestants while he plots behind their backs to see them evicted.

Fans have suspected Nick of having access to outside information, and his possessions were searched after reports he was carrying a tiny mobile phone.

Conspiracy theories

It has also been widely rumoured he is an employee of Channel 4 'planted' by the station - which the network has firmly denied.
Melanie
Melanie: Wants Nick out

He also admitted to lying after he claimed he had lost a wife in a car crash, and has already recieved verbal and written warnings for his conduct.

But his exploits have made him a cult figure among viewers of the show, which has become one of Channel 4's biggest hits.

Fans twigged something was up when the show's 24-hour live internet feed went down in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Internet fans

Graham Miller, who operates a spoof website called Little Brother, was watching at home in Liverpool.

Nichola
Playing by the rules: Nichola
He told BBC News Online: "Craig rumbled him, and was asking the other contestants what Nick had said about him, while Nick couldn't be seen.

"He was talking to Darren when the sound feed went, then so did the pictures.

"The cameras came back on at around 0500, while they were all asleep. The newsgroups all went crazy, people thought it was pre-recorded footage of them asleep because no-one would be able to sleep after something like that had happened."

A Big Brother spokesman said: "The online producer panicked and hit a panic button which brought the feed down between 0400 and 0600.

"It was a mistake, it shouldn't have happened and it won't happen again."

However, he denied widespread rumours that the situation had turned into a fist-fight.

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See also:

16 Aug 00 | Entertainment
Craig and Nichola face Brother vote
12 Aug 00 | Entertainment
Big Brother's Caroline vows revenge
14 Aug 00 | Entertainment
Fans bet on Brother 'conspiracy'
10 Aug 00 | Entertainment
Big Brother finds no phone
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