Phillip Scofield to leave ITV’s This Morning

Philip Schofield says he has agreed to step down from ITV’s This Morning “with immediate effect” after more than 20 years at the helm.

In a statement, he said: “I understand that ITV has decided that the current situation cannot go forward.”

Willoughby said: “The sofa won’t feel the same without him.”

ITV said she would remain as a presenter on the program and would be joined by “members of the This Morning family”.

Schofield will continue to work with the broadcaster, ITV’s statement said, including the British Soap Awards in June and an “upcoming brand new peak time series”.

On Instagram, Scofield wrote: “Throughout my career in TV – including the very rough past few days – I have always tried my best to be respectful and kind.

“I understand that ITV have decided that the current situation cannot go forward, and I want to do what I can to protect the show I love.

“So I have agreed to step down with immediate effect this morning, in the hope that the show can move on to a brighter future.”

“I want to thank everyone who has supported me – especially the wonderful viewers of This Morning – and I’ll see you all at the Soap Awards next month.”

In a statement on Instagram, Willoughby said: “It’s been over 13 years presenting This Morning with Phil, and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank him for all his knowledge, his experience and his humour.”

ITV’s Managing Director, Media and Entertainment Kevin Lygo called Schofield “one of the best broadcasters of his generation” and thanked him for “two decades of absolutely terrific television”.

Scofield has been a regular presenter on This Morning since 2002, and Willoughby since 2009. The pair also present ITV’s Dancing on Ice together.

After reports of a “cooling” in the pair’s friendship surfaced in The Sun earlier this month, Scofield told the newspaper: “The last few weeks haven’t been easy for either of us.”

But he said his co-host was his “rock”, adding: “She has been an incredible support on screen, behind the scenes and on the phone.”

Schofield recently returned to the show after taking a pre-planned leave around his younger brother’s sexual abuse trial at Exeter Crown Court.

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