Inside Holly Willoughby’s devastating year from Phil scandal to quitting This Morning

Holly Willoughby has stunned TV viewers as well as her co-stars and fellow celebrities by announcing she's sensationally quitting This Morning.

The 42 year old star took to Instagram on Tuesday, 10 October, to share a shock statement that said she was leaving after 14 years and "will not be returning."

Holly's statement began: “I have let ITV know today that after 14 years, I will not be returning to This Morning. To everyone who has ever worked on the show over the years, thank you so much. This is such a difficult goodbye, you are incredible and I forever will be proud of what we’ve done together."

There's no doubt the star has had an extremely tough time over the last 12 months, from facing public backlash over the infamous "queuegate," to her fall out with former best pal Philip Schofield.

Here's a look inside Holly's devastating year…


Holly and Phil, 61, caused much controversy when they were accused of jumping the queue to visit The Queen while she was lying in state following her death in September 2022.

Holly denied that she and Phillip had cut the queue in a VT for the hit ITV show they present together, while the programme also issued a statement saying the pair were they for work purposes.

The backlash was so severe following the incident that became known as “queuegate”, and Holly even gave a public on-air apology to the public, despite never admitting any wrongdoing.

At the time, a source told OK! : "Holly has been completely thrown by the reaction to their alleged queue jumping. They had no idea there would be any sort of backlash.

"Holly is used to being the darling of TV, she’s never faced any controversies so this has really shaken her.

"She feels completely mortified as she had no idea they would face any criticism, which is why they were so keen to address it on the show."

They added: "I don’t think reports she’s planning to quit are true but it probably is making her reassess her future, and how quickly public opinion can change."

Philip's affair and friendship fallout

Holly and her This Morning co-star Phillip Schofield were once the best of friends, going on double dates with each other's respective partners, and even holidaying together at Holly's home in Portugal.

But earlier this year, things started to appear frosty between the pair, with rumours of tensions between them being reported in the press.

Many fans were convinced the distance between the former friends was duo to the controversy that occurred last September when the stars were accused of “queue-jumping”

However, Philip later admitted that while the situation did create tension between the pair, it was actually the conviction of Phil’s brother Timothy for child sexual abuse charges that brought their decade long friendship to an end.

The surprising admission came in Phil’s first interview since being dropped by ITV after he confessed that he had previously been embroiled in an affair with a young runner on the show – a relationship he repeatedly denied when questioned by the channel.

In May 2023, he stepped down from the programme, apologising to his colleagues, friends and family for the “unwise but not illegal” affair.

Holly showed her hurt in an Instagram post at the time, writing, “When reports of this relationship first surfaced, I asked Phil if it was true and was told it was not. It’s been very hurtful to now find out this was a lie.”

Kidnap and murder plot

The latest blow came last week, when Holly was the target of an alleged kidnap and murder plot.

On Friday, 6 October, Gavin Plumb appeared at Chelmsford Magistrates Court on Friday, 6 October, charged with soliciting to commit murder and incitement to commit kidnap. Essex Police confirmed they arrested the suspect on Wednesday evening, and he was charged on Friday morning.

Chelmsford Magistrates' Court heard how Plumb allegedly had "weapons" in his possession. The Crown also claimed he compiled a "restraint kit" in his alleged aim to kidnap Holly and contacted a hitman based in America with a "detailed plan". District Judge Caroline Dickson told him, “This is a really serious allegation.”

Holly, who was said to be 'distraught' when she learned of the allegations, has been given a 24-hour police guard to protect her.

The Sun reported how Holly was pulled off the show moments before she was due to go on air, after police alerted producers.

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