Phillip Schofield has stepped down as co-presenter of ITV daytime show This Morning.
The presenter on many of Britain’s most-watched shows posted an Instagram Stories message today announcing he was leaving the ITV show, which he has helmed since 2002. A brand new “peak time ITV series” helmed by Schofield is to come, however, according to ITV’s content boss, who called him “one of the best broadcasters of his generation.”
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Schofield’s partnership with This Morning co-presenter Holly Willoughby is one of British TV’s longest running but has reportedly turned sour in recent months, and their on-screen chemistry in recent weeks has noticeably dipped. Schofield was rocked this week by the jailing of his brother, Timothy Schofield, who was convicted on child abuse charges and given a sentence of 12 years.
Last year, Schofield and Willoughby were last year forced to deny queue-jumping to see Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin as it lay in state, and repeatedly had to explain they had attended as journalists.
In his statement, Schofield wrote: “I have always been proud to cover fascinating stories on This Morning. But recently, This Morning itself has become the story.
“Throughout my career in TV — including the very difficult last few days — I have always done the best to be honourable and kind. I understand that ITV has decided the current situation can’t go on, and I want to do what I can to protect the show that I love.
“So I have agreed to step down from This Morning with immediate effect, in the hope that the show can move forward to a bright future. I’d like to thank everyone who has supported me — especially This Morning‘s amazing viewers — and I’ll see you all for the Soap Awards next month.”
Though a reported feud with Willoughby is connected with Schofield’s recent troubles, she released a statement saying: “It’s been over 13 great years presenting This Morning with Phil and I want to take this opportunity to thank him for all of his knowledge, his experience and his humour. The sofa won’t feel the same without him.”
Kevin Lygo, ITV’s Managing Director, Media and Entertainment added: “Phillip is hands down one of the best broadcasters of his generation and we thank him for his two decades worth of absolutely terrific television on the This Morning sofa.
“This Morning is made by one of the best and most diligent teams in television, who produce over 12 hours of live television each week. We look forward to continuing our relationship with Phillip starting with The British Soap Awards in June and a brand new peak time series to come.”
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