Phillip Schofield dramatically UNFOLLOWS Holly Willoughby ahead of first NTAs without him
PHILLIP Schofield has unfollowed his former best pal Holly Willoughby on Instagram.
Seemingly cementing the end of their once impenetrable friendship, the social media distancing comes ahead of Holly’s first National Television Awards without her former trusted sidekick.
Phillip, 61, does still follow Holly’s beloved sister Kelly, while Holly, for now, still follows Phillip.
Despite being ITV‘s golden girl, Holly, who made her return to screens yesterday following a lengthy summer break, has been snubbed in the category for the past two years.
In happier times, Holly and Phillip appeared worse for wear on This morning in 2016 after scooping a gong at the event.
Phillip, meanwhile, is currently a television pariah and was pictured yesterday looking downcast outside The Roebuck pub in Chiswick.
Holly and Phillip’s working relationship came to a shock end in May when the latter admitted to lying to her and show bosses about a six-month affair with a much younger male colleague.
It was recently confirmed that Holly has been complying with an independent investigation into the scandal.
A representative for Holly said she is doing everything asked of her by Jane Mulcahy KC.
ITV‘s managing director Kevin Lygo said of the investigation at the Edinburgh TV Festival: “She [Mulcahy] has been talking to everybody involved, they take your phone and look at every single text you’ve ever sent, email, WhatsApp.
“So, everything is available, lots of interviews, talking to everybody and I hope as soon as possible, but probably in September, she will make that public.”
In his first interview after the scandal came to light, Philip exclusively told us how he had not had any contact with Holly since the news broke.
He told us: “I’ve lost my best friend. I let her down (Holly). I let that entire show down. I let the viewers down.
“Holly did not know (about the romance). 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.
“I had no feud with Holly. She is my TV sister. But quite rightly, when I am in the middle of a s**t show with bad press over something where I have done nothing wrong — in fact, I did everything right — it’s a witch hunt. And that strips that (friendship) away.
“Quite rightly, she is going to take a step back and think, ‘I have to step back from this’, and I understand that completely.
“As we see now, this is a vicious game and the last thing you want is for something to stick on you.
“It was becoming bigger than the people we had on the show. I understand that.”
The pair’s relationship had already been on the rocks following Philip’s brother’s conviction for child sex offences.
They initially tried soldiering on as if everything was fine, but it became an untenable situation, despite Phillip’s insistence they hadn’t fallen out.