From Schofield controversy to 'murder plot': Inside Holly's 'year from hell' as presenter quits This Morning

10 October 2023, 21:26 | Updated: 10 October 2023, 21:30

Holly Willoughby has been at the centre of a number of stories in the last 12 months
Holly Willoughby has been at the centre of a number of stories in the last 12 months. Picture: Alamy/ITV
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

From being at the centre of an alleged 'kidnap and murder plot' to controversy surrounding Phillip Schofield's affair, Holly Willoughby has had one of the 'most difficult years of her life'.

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Difficulties started for Holly Willoughby just over a year ago, when she found herself at the centre of a row over 'skipping the queue' to see the late Queen Elizabeth lying in state.

Along with her co-presenter at the time, Phil Schofield, Holly received a huge backlash over claims they ‘queue jumped’ to see the Queen lying in state last September.

Holly apologised after the pair received a barrage of online abuse - and Phil has now revealed the impact of the scandal on him.

Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby were accused of skipping the queue to see the late Queen lying in state
Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby were accused of skipping the queue to see the late Queen lying in state. Picture: ITV

Then there was the controversy surrounding Schofield's affair with a younger male colleague while he was still working on This Morning.

Holly accused her former This Morning co-host of lying to her about the affair.

In an Instagram post she described Schofield's false reassurances that nothing happened as "very hurtful".

Schofield is embroiled in scandal and has lost his job on the ITV breakfast show amid reports that the pair's relationship is in turmoil.

Read More: Phillip Schofield offers support to Holly Willoughby after alleged kidnap and murder plot as pair still ‘have a bond’

Read More: 'I have to make this decision for me and my family': Holly Willoughby quits This Morning after 14 years

Her latest comments came just hours after one TV insider said there's "no coming back" for the beleaguered morning TV legend.

It comes after Phil, aged 61, announced on Instagram that he would be stepping down from This Morning after 13 years of co-hosting with Holly Willoughby, as the pair's friendship was reportedly in turmoil.

'Kidnap and murder plot'

Holly Willoughby
Holly Willoughby. Picture: Getty

Then, Gavin Plumb, 36, from Harlow, was charged with soliciting to commit murder and incitement to commit kidnap last week.

The thirty five-stone security guard 'contacted a hitman in the United States' in an alleged plot to kidnap and murder Holly , a court heard on Friday.

Holly quits

Holly Willoughby has announced she has quit This Morning after 14 years.

She said it has been an "honour to just be part of its story", but "I now feel I have to make this decision for me and my family".

Holly has not been on the show for the last week, after it emerged a man had been charged with soliciting to commit murder over an alleged plot to kidnap the TV presenter.

Holly, who regularly presented the show alongside Phillip Schofield for the last 10 years, said it was a "difficult decision.

Read it in full: Holly Willoughby's statement as presenter quits This Morning after 14 years

Holly's co-stars have started paying tribute to the veteran presenter, including Alison Hammon, who said "this is a very sad day".

Another presenter, Rochelle Humes, said: "This is a sad day. We love you x."

Vanessa Feltz, who also appears on the show regularly, said: "We will miss you so very much my darling."

"I have let ITV know today that after 14 years, I will not be returning to This Morning," she said in her statement.

"To everyone who has ever worked on the show over the years, thank you so so much. This is such a difficult goodbye, you are incredible and I forever will be proud of what we've done together.

"Thank you to everyone at ITV for being supportive. To every guest who has sat on our sofa, thank you."

"Most of all, thank you to the wonderful viewers. You've been so loyal, so supportive and the very best company every day," she continued.

"Richard and Judy said 'we only look after this show, it will always belong to the viewers'. It's been an honour to just be part of its story and I know this story has many chapters left to go.

"Sadly, however, I now feel I have to make this decision for me and my family. I will miss you all so much."

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