Holly Willoughby "never wanted" to be offered a job hosting 'I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!'.

Holly Willoughby

Holly Willoughby

The 'This Morning' host is to team up with Declan Donnelly to front the tough jungle reality show later this year while regular co-presenter Ant McPartlin continues to take time off to focus on his sobriety and though she is "honoured" to be working with her friend on the programme, she admitted no one in their circle of friends had ever wanted to see the popular partnership come to an end.

She said: "It was a job I never wanted to be offered. 'Because no one ever wanted the day to come when it was Dec without Ant.

"We all grew up in this business together, we live near each other and all our families are friends.

"But I felt really honoured that Dec trusted me to do it because it's such a huge deal for him to work with someone else."

Holly has been in regular contact with Ant and reassured him she will "look after" both the show and his best friend.

She told Stella magazine: "I told Ant that I would look after his show for him - because it's still his show - and I would look after Dec for him."

Holly - who has children Harry, nine, Belle, seven, and Chester, four, with husband Dan Baldwin - has been busy preparing for the show by spending an hour a night watching old clips on YouTube with her kids.

She said: "We all sit and watch it before they go to bed."

The 37-year-old presenter has also been warned by producers she needs to toughen up and not feel sorry for the contestants when they undergo gruesome trials.

She admitted: "I've had a few meetings where they [the producers] run through the trials and I'm there saying, 'But that's so mean.'

"I keep being told not to feel sorry for any of the contestants and that if I do, I'll soon lose that sympathy because you just get completely used to it as part of the show - but I'm not so sure."

Despite her years of experience in live TV, Holly plans to let Dec take the lead on the show.

She said: "I'm just intending to enjoy it and put myself in Dec's hands... as long as he is not holding any creepy-crawlies, because then you'll hear the screams in England."