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Daytime TV is supposed to be sunny, lighthearted and varied, and for decades ITV’s This Morning won awards for fulfilling that role. At the heart of its award-winning success, at least for the past 14 years, were Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield. TV critic Scott Bryan tells Nosheen Iqbal how they were seemingly the perfect double act to interview everyone from prime ministers to grieving parents from the This Morning sofa.
Yet recently tabloid newspapers began reporting that their much-vaunted friendship was under strain and hinting at a darker reason than the usual TV ego clash. The rumours reached a fever pitch before Schofield, 61, eventually resigned. The former children’s TV presenter later released a statement admitting to an “unwise but not illegal” affair with a much younger, much more junior colleague.
ITV said it had previously investigated whether there was a relationship but found no evidence. Schofield admitted he had lied to his bosses, his wife and his colleagues about it. But interest in the story is not going away and with complaints from other former presenters about a “toxic” working culture, This Morning’s future is in doubt.
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