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This Morning fans are used to seeing Holly Willoughby dissolve into giggles because of something her 'TV husband' Phillip Schofield has said. Sometimes it only takes a look for the pair of them to be crying with laughter.
But as she returns for a series of Take Off With Bradley & Holly – following a pilot show aired at Christmas 2019 – Holly admits that her new TV partner Bradley Walsh is even more of a handful than Phil!
It seems that Bradley, the star of The Chase and Doctor Who, soon to be seen as Pop Larkin in a Darling Buds Of May reboot, likes to have fun on set. And so with games to be played and luxury holidays to be won, it can be down to Holly to try and make sure the show stays on course!
Asked what it's like working with Brad, the TV favourite retorted, "A nightmare! No, it was lovely, although he does need reining in and keeping in check."
So while Holly has done her time being naughty on Celebrity Juice alongside pal Keith Lemon, on this show she is very much the grown up trying to cope with irrepressible joker Bradley.
"I have to take control of the situation," admits Holly, who is married to TV producer Dan Baldwin and is mum to Harry, Belle and Chester. "When I am working with Bradley, I really have to be on my toes and pay attention, because I am keeping us both in line."
And Bradley is full of admiration for his new TV partner, even if she does clip his wings when he goes on flights of fancy!
"It’s fantastic working with Holly," reveals Brad, who said goodbye to his time in the Tardis as Doctor Who's Graham at New Year, with his workload busier than ever.
"She is at the top of her game as far as live television goes. Working with Holly makes this show special for me."
And the former Pontins holiday camp blue coat admits that while they get on brilliantly, the age difference between him and Holly was apparent when they worked together previously, on late night ITV sports quiz, Play To The Whistle.
"When we did Play To The Whistle, Holly took the mickey out of me the whole time and treated me like an elderly person."
And when Holly says she has to "take control of the situation", it sounds like Bradley is definitely the mischievous scamp not the elder statesman here…
"I don’t know what you mean – is it because I have a juvenile sense of humour?" he laughs.
But it's clearly not a problem for Holly, who cut her teeth on kids TV before landing the plum role alongside Phillip on This Morning.
"A little bit. You go off piste and you play, which I love."
And while foreign jaunts remain rather unattainable for many of us right now, the BBC hopes viewers will enjoy seeing lucky winners bag a dream holiday. The series was filmed at the same time as the pilot back in 2019, before Covid-19 swept across the world.
It's only now that life is starting to get easier that the series is making it to the screen.
The show gives members of the studio audience a chance to win the holiday of a lifetime by competing in a series of silly games. These are interspersed with celebrity appearances, inspirational stories and surprises.
“We’re sending families on holiday and it’s about time they had one,” says Bradley. “We’re trying to give everyone a bit of escapism. It’s been so tough for everyone, and I hope this brings people a little bit of joy.”
Holly adds, “The show will be great escapism for everyone right now. Going on holiday
will be more exciting than ever. I think now is the best time for Take Off to go out.”
Take Off With Bradley & Holly, Saturday BBC One 6pm
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