The first series of the winter edition of Love Island is finally here! But the major change everyone has been talking about isn't the new location – it's the fact Laura Whitmore has replaced Caroline Flack as host after she was arrested in December for allegedly assaulting her boyfriend Lewis Burton following a row. With Caroline later stepping down from her role, many fans queried whether it was a permanent absence or just for this new series and now show bosses have finally given us an answer.
Showrunner Amanda Stavri revealed producers are in "constant contact" with Caroline as she holidays in Los Angeles during her break from her work schedule, and haven't ruled out her returning to present the summer series. Love Island commissioning editor Amanda told The Mirror: "We are continuing to talk to Caroline. We are in constant contact and the door is open."
Love Island bosses confirmed 'the door is open' for Caroline's return
Caroline appeared in court two days before Christmas to enter a not guilty plea in response to the assault charges. The star was seen putting her head in her hands as a judge refused to remove bail conditions preventing her from contacting her partner, 27, according to reports - after prosecutor Katie Weiss accused Caroline of "flouting" her bail conditions by posting a message to Lewis on Instagram. Details of the alleged dispute were explained during the hearing by the prosecution, who played a recording to the court of the phonecall Lewis made to police.
Caroline Flack appeared in court in December to plead not guilty to assault
Lewis reportedly told the emergency services that Caroline had hit him on the head with a lamp while he was sleeping, with the prosecution adding that "his face was covered in blood". The court also heard that Caroline had been "disruptive" while in police custody, and had to be restrained on the ground. The assault reportedly occurred after she found text messages that led her to believe Lewis had been unfaithful.
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