This Morning fans have heaped praise on "bubbly" Josie Gibson after she supported Holly Willoughby 's return to the hit daytime programme today.

The long-running ITV show has been plagued by controversy in recent weeks after veteran presenter Phillip Schofield, 61, stepped down when it emerged he'd had an affair with a younger male ITV employee.

Holly, 42, made her much-anticipated return today, 5 June, with an emotional speech that saw her fight back tears as she addressed her one time close friend Phil's shock exit.

She was flanked by Josie, 38, who embraced her after she concluded her pre-prepared statement.

ITV viewers have flocked to social media to share their thoughts, with Josie garnering much admiration for her sympathetic approach to her co-star.

One This Morning fan said: "Well done Holly & Josie, fab duo - let's see more of Josie in future!!"

Another said: "So happy Josie is presenting with Holly", while a third commented: "Well done Holly, you introduced the show well with Josie beside you."

One fan was keen for Josie to become a permanent addition to the iconic blue sofa: "Josie Gibson is EXACTLY what This Morning needs right now. Gig her the damn gig full time!!!!!!!"

And another said: "I loved this morning with Phil and Holly so good luck Josie today [you're] very bubbly and great fun on TV .. hope the show goes well".

"Lovely to see you back Holly. You look beautiful and so glad you have Josie to host with you", added another. One viewer said they "love Josie" and branded her a "breath of fresh air".

Josie first shot to fame after winning the eleventh series of the reality show Big Brother in 2010, before progressing into presenting roles. For This Morning, she has regularly hosted the competition segments, often leaving Holly and one-time close pal Phil in fits of giggles.

Since then, she's upped her work on the beloved morning show and has been added to the roster of main presenters, alongside Holly, Alison Hammond, Demort O'Leary and more.

Phil called it quits last month after fronting the show for more than two decades. The disgraced presenter stepped down with "immediate effect", initially saying in a statement to ITV: "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 my 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."

His affair with a former colleague was then revealed, with Phil going on to discuss the controversy in a tell-all interview with the BBC's Amol Rajan.

The former ITV star said he "didn't tell anybody" about his affair with his former This Morning colleague, confirming Holly "did not know" about it.

In an interview with The Sun, the 61 year old presenter apologised to her for lying about the relationship, and concluded: "I've lost my best friend".

He added: "I let her [Holly] down. I let that entire show down. I let the viewers down. Holly did not know [about the affair] and she was one of the first texts that I sent, to say: 'I am so, so sorry that I lied to you'.

"She didn't reply and I understand why she didn't reply as well. So yeah, if anyone is in any way linking Holly to this, that is ­absolutely, wholly untrue."

In Holly's address to the public on her return today, she said: "It feels very strange indeed, sitting here without Phil, and I imagine that you have all been feeling a lot like I have - shaken, troubled, let down.

"Worried for the wellbeing of people on all sides of what's been going on, and full of questions."

Holly began to talk about Phil in third person, and didn't mention his name in the rest of the statement. She continued: "You, me, and all of us at This Morning gave our love and support to someone who was not telling the truth.

"Who acted in such a way that they, themselves, felt that they had to resign from ITV and step down from a career that they loved."

Holly went on to thank fans "from my heart" for their support and their "kind messages" as she expressed gratitude to them for "being here this morning".

She continued: "Myself, Josie, Alison, Dermot, Craig, and everyone who works on this show will continue to work hard every day to bring you the show that we love."

Holly then turned to Josie, as she said: "So on that note, Josie..." before they shared a warm embrace.


2023-06-05T10:53:27Z dg43tfdfdgfd