It was a major night for ITV stars, with its summer party drawing the likes of Lorraine and AJ Odudu, but key presenters from This Morning crew were a noticeable absence.
While celebs including Vanessa Feltz, 61, and Lisa Snowdon, 51, let their hair down at the bash held at London’s Mandrake Hotel on Wednesday evening, there were several no-shows.
This Morning stalwarts including Alison Hammond, 48, Josie Gibson, 38, and Craig Doyle, 52, were nowhere to be seen, while Holly Willoughby, 42, who is currently on holiday in Portugal, also skipped the bash.
Only Dermot O’Leary, 50, flew the flag for the core team of the long-running daytime show.
The glitzy event comes weeks after the fallout from Phillip Schofield’s bombshell confession, which came after reports that Holly and her then co-presenter since 2009, were ‘barely speaking’ and their relationship had cooled behind the scenes.
Days later, Phillip, 61, quit This Morning and later sensationally resigned from all his ITV projects including hosting the British Soap Awards, after admitting he had lied about an ‘unwise but not illegal’ affair with a young male runner.
In the meantime, Holly took a break from the show, and upon her return said she was ‘shaken, troubled, let down’ and ‘full of questions’, and has since been joined by presenters including Craig until ITV finds a permanent replacement for Phillip.
This Morning was also hit by accusations of ‘toxicity’ on set by the likes of former stars Dr Ranj Singh and Eamonn Holmes, with the former claiming he was managed out when he raised concerns with ITV bosses.
ITV chief executive Carolyn McCall later addressed claims about the culture at the programme during a parliamentary committee.
Shooting down the accusations, she said: ‘What I know is that when we talk about culture it’s incredibly important to me, personally and so it deeply disappoints me, right?
‘But we do not recognise that in This Morning and the reason for that is that we have tangible evidence to tell you that the vast majority of people at daytime and at This Morning are engaged.
After Dr Ranj made his allegations public, ITV insisted it had a ‘robust duty of care’ towards its staffers in a letter penned by McCall.
In the wide-ranging message, she addressed Dr Ranj’s claims and says the network was ‘sorry’ to read his statement.
The network has also instructed a barrister to conduct an external review into the facts surrounding Phillip’s departure.
This Morning editor Martin Frizell confirmed the findings of the investigation will be made public.
Metro.co.uk has contacted reps for Alison, Josie and Craig for comment.
This Morning airs weekdays from 10am on ITV.
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