Fern Britton in shock as Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford are axed from This Morning Fridays

FERN Britton has been left in shock by Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford's axing from This Morning.

The telly favourite, 63, voiced her surprise on Twitter after learning the popular husband and wife duo were being dropped from their Friday slot.

Replying to a Dan Wootton tweet slamming the treatment of Eamonn and Ruth by ITV, Fern wrote: "Oh no?"

She then retweeted a further post by the Talk Radio host that championed their replacement Alison Hammond.

It read: "That doesn’t take away from the fact Alison Hammond is a superstar who deserves the world. Overlooked for far too long by ITV, this is her moment."

Another TV presenter, Suzi Perry, was also critical of the move, replying: "They’re a class act. What a shark pit this industry can be."

Eamonn and Ruth are said to be "furious and upset" after being dropped from the show after 14 years.

They are being replaced by Alison Hammond and Dermot O'Leary – with The Sun revealing in September that the couple feared getting the chop.

The long-serving TV duo have presented Friday's episode of the daytime show since 2006 – but they will now only be called in for the summer holidays when main hosts Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield take their six-week break.

They will then take over presenting duties for Monday – Thursday, but Alison and Dermot will be the new weekly faces for Friday's shows.

The pair previously impressed bosses when they hosted the show together over the summer, with producers keen to add more diversity to their line-up.

However, the news hasn't gone down well with Eamonn and Ruth – who have been left hurt by the decision.

A source shared: "Eamonn is pretty furious and everyone feels for him and Ruth, they are well liked on the team, but sometimes tough decisions have to be made."

Speaking of Alison and Dermot, the source added to The Mirror: "They have real warmth. It's time for change and they are perfect."

Another source told The Sun: “Eamonn and Ruth are deeply hurt and saddened by the decision.

“It feels like they have been singled out, made an example of and left on the scrap heap, with little other prospects at the channel.

“It's a blow to fans, who love their chemistry on screen, and eagerly tune in to watch them every Friday.

“Eamonn and Ruth are much loved but the show is under pressure to diversify and execs have had to make some tough choices about the future.

“Alison has a huge fanbase, so she is a great choice, while Dermot has loads of experience dealing with live TV.

“Eamonn feared he was too ‘pale, stale and male’ as broadcasters are constantly on the hunt to attract younger viewers.”

News of the reshuffle comes after ITV chief Carolyn McCall sent an email outlining her accelerated diversity and inclusion plan.

Alison has spoken out in the past about the need for more black TV presenters. In 2018 she said: “I don’t think it’s normal that you see a black person in my industry.

“There needs to be more people of colour. There needs to be more diversity. Then TV will represent society as it is.”

Network insiders were worried about a repeat of “Sue Barker-gate” after the former tennis champ, 64, lost her job fronting Question Of Sport for the BBC.

One said: “It’ll look terrible if they give Ruth and Eamonn the boot.

“Many of our viewers are older or retired, and rely on them to provide some cheer of a morning.”

But This Morning bosses are determined to move ahead with the swap after launching an internal investigation into the diversity of the programme.

And with Holly and Phil considered "untouchable", it is Eamonn and Ruth who have been impacted by the shake-up.

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