The programme was forced to make a change

This Morning viewers were in for a surprise on Friday’s show when it was revealed that Eamonn Holmes had been REPLACED at the last minute.

ITV had to act quickly to get someone in to host the show alongside Ruth Langsford after Eamonn, 58, fell ill and it was Alison Hammond who ended up stepping into his shoes, a move that received a mixed reaction from fans of the programme.

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Eamonn’s wife Ruth, 57, explained the situation at the beginning of the show by telling viewers how her hubby had woken up poorly just as their son Jack continues to battle a bug too.

‘They’re dropping like flies in my house,’ she told the camera. ‘Jack was off all week with the lergy, and this morning Eamonn woke up with no voice. Literally can’t speak. He was having to write me notes, so he’s off sick today.

‘We’ve phoned a few people, but it was very short notice, so…’

At that point Alison, 42, started to shout across the studio before making her entrance with two suitcases in tow.

The presenter – who lives in Birmingham – explained of the moment she got the call: ‘I was getting my son ready for school, about to do the school run.

‘Popped to the gym as you do and then I’d got a message from my boss saying, “Al, can you do the show?”

‘I thought about ignoring it, but then I thought “Ruth on her own? It’s not gonna happen.”’

During the show Alison got stuck in to various heavy-going segments including a discussion about troubled childhoods and another concerning how the issue of obesity amongst nurses should be tackled.

There were lighter moments too though – at one point Alison accidentally smeared her foundation on a royal correspondent’s top. Whoops!

The bubbly star’s late addition to the show divided viewers, with many not too pleased about her replacing Eamonn.

‘time to switch off and put radio on …is there anyone more annoying than that god awful alison??#ThisMorning,’ one Twitter user commented, whilst another wrote: ‘Cant watch sorry. Anyone would have been better than her. Over acting much!’

However, plenty of watchers enjoyed seeing Alison on the programme, with one tweeting: ‘Loving Alison co-presenting with Ruth #girlpower #ThisMorning’

‘Alison is doing a TERRIFIC Job hosting today #ThisMorning,’ a fellow fan agreed.

Kudos to Alison for stepping in at the last minute – and get well soon, Eamonn!