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Holly Willoughby
Born Holly Marie Willoughby
10 February 1981 (1981-02-10) (age 29)
Brighton, East Sussex, England
Occupation Model, television presenter
Years active 2000–present
Spouse(s) Dan Baldwin (m. 2007–present) «start: (2007-08-04)»"Marriage: Dan Baldwin to Holly Willoughby" Location: (linkback:
Official website

Holly Marie Willoughby (born 10 February 1981) is an English television presenter and model, known for her work in presenting children's TV and entertainment shows. In her early career she modelled underwear and went on to present CD:UK. She was known for various minor controversies, such as showering in public and accidentally exposing her breast on a live television show. In 2006, she won a BAFTA and was chosen to present Dancing on Ice, a highly popular UK celebrity talent show, shown on ITV which drew in an average of 8.9m million viewers in the most recently concluded series. In July 2009 she was elected as a replacement for Fern Britton on This Morning.[1] She began presenting on This Morning on Monday, 14 September 2009, alongside BBC veteran Phillip Schofield.



The younger of two daughters of the manager of a double-glazing company and an air stewardess,[2] she was educated at the independent Burgess Hill School For Girls in the town of Burgess Hill in West Sussex. She went on to attend The College of Richard Collyer. Her sister, Kelly, also works in the television industry.[3] She is related by marriage to actress Tamzin Outhwaite,[3] and is best of friends with fellow TV presenter Fearne Cotton.[4] Willoughby is a vocal supporter of Premier League association football club Arsenal FC.[5]

At the age of 23 she became engaged to Dan Baldwin, a producer on Ministry of Mayhem, and on the same day they moved into a flat in South London.[3][6][7] Willoughby announced their engagement live on Saturday Showdown, on 6 May 2006.[8] The wedding took place on 4 August 2007 at Amberley Castle, West Sussex. Fearne Cotton and Sarah Cawood were two of the bridesmaids and Dermot O'Leary was an usher.[9] Whilst she was presenting The Xtra Factor on 1 November 2008, offhand comments by judges Simon Cowell and Louis Walsh led Willoughby to confirm that she was pregnant with her first child.[10][11][11][12][13]

In 2006, Willoughby won a BAFTA in recognition of her abilities as a children’s TV presenter.[14] In early 2008, she helped make a point that the UK, as a nation, wastes too much water, by having a 3-minute shower in a cubicle in front of the public fountain in the middle of Trafalgar Square in London. The event was part of the Be Water Wise campaign which lead up to World Water Day on 22 March 2008.[15]

Willoughby has caused minor scandal on occasion. While presenting the children's programme Ministry of Mayhem in 2004, she accidentally exposed a breast.[16] In January 2008, Willoughby presented Dancing on Ice in a very low cut dress which led to a small number of complaints.[17]

Willoughby and her husband Dan became parents to their first child, a boy named Harry James Baldwin, weighing 7lb 4oz, on 11 May 2009, at 1:18pm.[18]

Willoughby has had an almost unbroken run of work on television since August 2009. From August to December she worked on the 6th series of The Xtra Factor and from January 2010 she works on Dancing On Ice. And since September she has worked on This Morning. At one point she was on TV everyday except Fridays; Mon-Thurs This Morning and Sat-Sun The Xtra Factor.


Modelling career

In 1995, at the age of 14, Willoughby was spotted by talent scouts at The Clothes Show Live exhibition. Storm Model Management signed her up.[19] She appeared in teen magazines for girls such as Mizz, Just Seventeen and More!. From 1998, at the age of 17, she started modelling underwear for various clients including Pretty Polly. She appeared in various adverts and posters.

Media career

Children's TV

In 2000, Willoughby won an audition for a show on CITV featuring S Club 7 called S Club TV.[20] In this show actors represented an alternative S Club.[21] She also acted in a show called S Club 7: Artistic Differences. She played a character called Zoe alongside the regular members of the band.[22]. and after these shows, she worked as a receptionist for a while and then as a runner for the defunct shopping channel Auction World TV.

She also took on menial jobs and started Open University course in psychotherapy. Then Eventually she found work as assistant manager during which time she persuaded a friend to make a show reel of her. This show reel secured her an agent who then contacted the BBC[20] Later in 2000, she presented a factual entertainment programme for children called Xchange. She went on to host several other children's shows for CBBC: X-perimental, and CBBC at the Fame Academy (CBBC's version of the BBC-TV talent show Fame Academy).Her breakthrough as a children's entertainer came when she re-joined CITV in 2004 to co-present their flagship entertainment show Ministry of Mayhem which was aired on Saturday mornings. It was on this programme that she met her future husband Dan Baldwin, one of the show's producers. In 2006, the show's title was changed to Holly & Stephen's Saturday Showdown in order to reflect the popularity of its co-presenters, Willoughby and Stephen Mulhern. During the final episode of the show (1 July 2006), Willoughby accidentally revealed one of her breasts during a particularly energetic routine. CITV received a small number of complaints, though the wider audience merely wrote the occurrence off as unfortunate. In 2005 Holly presented Feel the Fear, a children's entertainment programme in which the presenters are set unnerving challenges. She has also had a number of minor appearances on other children's programmes and programmes relating to children. She co-presented the final in 2004 of the children's version of Stars in Their Eyes. In 2006, she also appeared as Stephen Mulhern's regular illusion assistant in season 2 of Tricky TV.

The programmes listed below were broadcast on CITV (ITV) in 2000.

  • S Club TV (2000)
  • S Club 7: Artistic Differences (2000)

The programmes listed below were broadcast on CBBC (BBC), between 2000 and 2004.

The programmes listed below were broadcast on CITV (ITV), between 2004 and 2006.

Mainstream TV

Willoughby presented CD:UK for a short while in the spring of 2005, she replaced veteran presenter Cat Deeley before Myleene Klass became the regular presenter.

Willoughby's major breakthrough as a mainstream family entertainer came when she was chosen to co-present the flagship ITV talent show Dancing on Ice, alongside Phillip Schofield, in 2006.[23] In this show, celebrities from the UK are partnered with professional dancers to learn ice-dancing routines which are then judged by a panel of experts and voted on by the public. She continues to co-host the show. She was criticised for her choice of costume in January 2008 (see biography, above).

She has presented a number of other ITV programmes, especially spin-off show such as Celebrity Wrestling: Bring It On, Greased Lightnin and most recently, The Xtra Factor. She has also presented shows exploring celebrity gossip such as Lip Service and the comedy show Celebrity Juice. In 2007, she took over from Davina McCall as the presenter of Streetmate, a dating game show in the UK. She presented sections of The National Television Awards in 2007 and 2008.

She currently co-presents Holly & Fearne Go Dating alongside Fearne Cotton. In this show the two hosts, who are presented as best friends, attempt to find dates for single people that they meet in various situations in in UK. She has also presented Here Come the Boys, a show celebrating the achievements of popular UK male singers of the past 50 years.

All programmes listed below are broadcast by ITV (ITV1 and ITV2 channels).

Guest appearances


Other notable achievements

  • She was voted 71st in FHM's 100 Sexiest Women In The World poll in 2005; 30th in 2006; 26th in 2007, 100th in 2008 and 74th in 2009
  • She turned on Brighton's first Christmas lights for 25 years on 16 November 2006
  • In August 2008, she and Fearne Cotton began a series of television advertisements promoting the Imagine game series for Nintendo DS
  • Holly was a model for Wonderbra adverts in 1999
  • The announcement of Holly replacing Fern on This Morning, led to her being voted one of the most annoying people in 2009 on the BBC3 Show.


  1. ^ "Willoughby new This Morning host". BBC News. 15 July 2009. Retrieved 15 July 2009. 
  2. ^ Mail-on Sunday Holly Willoughby on 'that breast incident'
  3. ^ a b c Mail-on-Sunday, Mum’s the word, Holly
  4. ^ Daily mirror, Exclusive: Fearne Cotton and Holly Willoughby on men and marriage
  5. ^ Sky Sports, Holly's A Frock Star
  6. ^ Pregnant Holly Willoughby glows on her first outing since Simon and Louis let her secret slip live on Xtra Factor Daily Mail, 3 November 2008.
  7. ^ Daniel Baldwin's IMDb entry.
  8. ^ Sunday Mirror, Exclusive: Holly can't wait to wed
  9. ^ Daily Mirror, Exclusive 26/02/2008
  10. ^, Holly Willoughby expecting baby
  11. ^ a b ITV Xfactor website
  12. ^
  13. ^ Holly Willoughby expecting baby
  14. ^ a b Children's - Awards - The BAFTA site
  15. ^ Female First, Holly Willoughby Showers in Public
  16. ^ Hollywood Premier, Holly Willoughby: Kids' TV was wild and naughty
  17. ^ entertainment news, Good Molly, Miss Holly
  18. ^ Daily Mail - Holly Willoughby Delivers Baby Boy
  19. ^ The Guardian: The 20 most powerful celebrity makers 6. Sarah Doukas
  20. ^ a b Willoughby Bio
  21. ^ Off the Telly Reviews
  22. ^ IMDB Listing
  23. ^ ITV Bio for Dancing On Ice: Holly Willoughby

External links

Preceded by
Fearne Cotton
Host of The Xtra Factor
Preceded by
Fern Britton
Host of This Morning
with Phillip Schofield


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