Phillip Schofield admitted to having starred alongside a number of “gorgeous women” during his time as one of the leading hosts of British television. He has spent 18 years on ‘This Morning’ and a number of other ITV iterations alongside popular female stars of the time. His presenting partnerships started with cuddly puppet Gordon the Gopher while on BBC, before he joined Sarah Greene on ‘Going Live!’ and then moving to the rival broadcaster. He even attributed his TV success to the chemistry he had with his “onscreen wives” but maintained Stephanie Lowe wasn’t threatened by them.
Phillip Schofield started on ‘This Morning’ alongside Fern Britton after the departure of Scottish star John Leslie in 2003.
To get to know each other better the presenters had a “very honest booze-fuelled afternoon” where they “talked about everything”, according to a 2009 Digital Spy article.
He said: “By the next day there were no secrets and we were best of mates.”
Phillip recalled that she sat him down with a “bottle of Scotch” and the pair got “tipsy”, the Mirror reported in 2012.
He claims Fern said: “This is a job where you’ve got to know me very well and I’ve got to know you very well so here we go, I’ll tell you everything.”
She left the show in 2009 and was replaced by Holly Willoughby.
Since the double-act started working together they have got to “know each other so well” – along with their respective partners – and even go on holidays together.
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Phillip Schofield has starred alongside Holly Willoughby on ‘This Morning’ for 12 years
He said: “She knows when I’m in trouble on air and am going to laugh and I know what pushes her buttons.
“We make a dangerous combination. I adore Holly. We’ve had a terrific time together.”
Phillip revealed that Holly found the prospect of presenting the flagship show “daunting” and was extremely nervous during her first week.
But by the end of it, she exclaimed: “Oh my God, we could have been doing this for years.”
He attributed their onscreen success to being “firm friends” offscreen and having shared some “really lovely nights out together – and some fairly raucous ones too”.
Another lady in the star’s life was Christine Bleakley, who later married England football ace Frank Lampard, while the pair co-hosted ‘Dancing on Ice’.
Phillip said: “She is lovely. Very warm and great fun. She is a bang-on terrific presenter and I think she has done brilliantly.”
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Phillip Schofield has presented alongside Fern Britton and Christine Lampard (née Bleakley)
When asked if he struggled to juggle the women in his life – his “TV wives” and offscreen partner Stephanie Lowe – he claimed to have struck the perfect balance.
He explained: “I’m sure any sensible bloke would agree you sometimes have to dance very delicate steps where women are concerned.
“Blokes have to be very careful about their reactions to things and what they say.
“I occasionally have to do a very delicate dance but I think I’ve got it down to a fine art now.”
He revealed that he felt honoured to present alongside his small screen counterparts and that thankfully there wasn’t a hint of jealousy from Stephanie.
He said: “I know that I am a very lucky man to work with all these gorgeous women.
“But my wife isn’t jealous. She knows she’s the only woman for me.
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“I love Steph. She’s wonderful. A great mate, a lovely person. Gorgeous. Very bubbly, very diplomatic.”
Phillip’s comments were made nearly a decade before the star came out as gay in February this year and his wife vowed to stand by him until he finds love again.
He admitted to knowing he was gay before he married Stephanie in Scotland back in 1993 but tried to suppress his feelings.
The star told The Sun: “Whatever was ‘there’ I thought, ‘OK, whatever this is, you stay back because I am happy.’
“If you ask anyone who is gay, they know — there is no confusion.
“I had to tell the truth because, if I am honest, it was affecting my head. It was starting to damage me and it was hurting me a lot.
“The whole family started to notice the change in me. I became very, very quiet, very down and locked into myself.”