Emma will take Brian's spot on the Channel 5 show

Emma Willis is set to take over from Brian Dowling as presenter of Big Brother.

The ex-model – who currently hosts spin-off show Big Brother’s Bit On The Side – will make her first appearance when the Channel 5 series returns later this year.

‘Thank you to all those that have sent messages of support and congratulation. It genuinely is a dream job for me. Roll on summer! #bbuk,’ Tweets Emma, 37.

Former housemate Brian, 34, has fronted the reality programme since it first moved to Channel 5 in August 2011.

While he’s been credited for doing a ‘sterling job’, Emma – who’s married to singer Matt Willis – was reportedly chosen because she has ‘all the qualities’ of original presenter Davina McCall.

Emma is a natural on screen. She’s made the spin-off show her own and now the time is totally right for her to step up,’ Channel 5 boss Ben Frow tells the Daily Star.

‘I can’t wait to see her dealing with the housemates, both famous and soon to be famous.’

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Anna Duff