Holly Willoughby has revealed her sudden absence from This Morning this week was down to her children having a coronavirus scare.
The 39-year-old presenter was mysteriously missing from episodes of the daytime show this week leaving Phillip Schofield to host with stand-ins Alison Hammond and Davina McCall.
No reason was given for Holly’s seemingly last minute withdrawal leaving regular viewers speculating as to her whereabouts.
Holly has now revealed that two of her three children were struck down with illness and had to be tested for Covid-19 after displaying symptoms.
The presenter shares children Harry, 11, Belle, nine, and Chester, five, with producer husband Dan Baldwin.
Holly was also tested despite showing no symptoms.
Speaking out about her family’s health scare on social media Holly said in a statement: “Just wanted to say thank you for all your kind messages….
“Over the last few days two of our children were unwell and had symptoms of COVID. In line with government guidelines we were waiting for the results of the tests before I could return to work, couple that with just wanting to look after two poorly children, it meant having two days away from This Morning.
“I chose not to alert everyone to this because my focus was looking after them.
“Thankfully, all tests came back negative and everybody’s feeling much better.
“See you on Monday!” Holly finished, adding: “Once again thanks for all the lovely messages…”
The family are said to have been given the all-clear on Friday night, reports the paper, leaving Holly free to return to her day job next week.
It comes after viewers were surprised to see a last minute change to the This Morning line-up this week.
Alison Hammond appeared in the studio with Phil on Wednesday leaving viewers to guess what had happened to Holly, whose absence was not mentioned.
Then when Davina McCall joined Phil on Thursday viewers grew even more suspicious.
“Still no Holly then? Curiouser and curiouser. What’s the craic with holly then?”
On Friday husband and wife duo Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford fronted the award-winning show as usual.
It comes after Holly and her family were forced to leave their holiday to Portugal early this year in order to isolate so she could be back ready to host the ITV show in September.
The family had planned to spend seven weeks at the luxurious Quinta do Lago resort, which offers private villas with pools for a relaxing break in the sunshine.
However, they were forced to shave two weeks off the summer holiday when travel restrictions changed at the last minute.
During the summer it was also reported that Holly has left her YMU Entertainment agency to set up her own female-focused management company – Roxy Management.
The Sun reported Holly wanted to be able to take more control and improve her “work-life balance”.
A source said: “Lockdown has given her time to reflect and think about her future.
“In many ways, it has become the perfect opportunity to start afresh and it was just time for a change.
“She is really excited about managing herself and having more say over decisions on a day-to-day basis.”
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