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Eamonn Holmes' former co-star Fiona Phillips reveals he supported her during mental health struggle

The This Morning presenter encouraged the Strictly star to seek help

Diane Shipley

Fiona Phillips spoke out about her time on Strictly Come Dancing in a frank new interview on Sunday. In the conversation, published by The Sun, the presenter shared that she was struggling with her mental health at the time of her appearance on the BBC dance competition. The 59-year-old was paired with Brendan Cole back in 2005 but never won over the judges and left in week four.

WATCH: Ruth Langsford absent from This Morning

She admitted in the interview that she and the New Zealand native didn’t get along, calling the dancer "very naughty". However, she gave credit to her former GMTV co-star Eamonn Holmes, who reportedly encouraged her to get help for depression, although she didn't take his advice at the time. The star said she hadn't admitted to herself how much stress she was under, with young children and ageing parents to care for alongside her stressful job and her appearance on Strictly. The star has since begun speaking openly about her mental health.

READ: Why Ruth Langsford missed her This Morning presenting duties

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Fiona has since opened up about her struggle with depression 

A couple of years ago, the mum-of-two appeared on Lorraine where she talked about the pressures of work and motherhood, and how they combined with a genetic tendency to depression and the menopause to make her feel terrible. Fiona said: "My poor mum, when we were little, she used to lock herself in the room for a day in the dark because she was just so, so depressed. I think it can run in families as well. Things happen to you… and the menopause - that is a horrible thing! I remember my mum in a real state with her menopause and I just thought, 'It can't be that bad surely' – and yes, it can."

MORE: Eamonn Holmes shares very rare photo of son Jack as he celebrates 18th birthday

Since her breakfast TV gig ended, Fiona has presented documentaries including The Truth About Stress and The Truth About Sugar and appeared as a panellist on Loose Women.

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