Phillip Schofield looks deep in thought as he's seen for the first time since breaking social media silence in over a year – after hinting TV comeback

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Phillip Schofield looked deep in thought as he was seen for the first time since he broke his year long social media silence, on Wednesday.

The former This Morning host, 62, has heavily hinted a TV comeback after he stepped out with TV royalty Declan Donnelly last week as well as making a social media return this week.

Hours after he posted his first Instagram post in over a year, Phillip stepped out for a low-key walk with his dog.

He seemed in high-spirits as he headed out for some fresh air in the sun around West London. 

Phillip stood down from the daytime show after admitting he had lied about his relationship with a much younger colleague. 

Phillip Schofield, 62, looked deep in thought as he was seen for the first time since he broke his year long social media silence, on Wednesday

Phillip Schofield, 62, looked deep in thought as he was seen for the first time since he broke his year long social media silence, on Wednesday

The former This Morning host has heavily hinted a TV comeback after he stepped out with TV royalty Declan Donnelly last week as well as making a social media return this week

The former This Morning host has heavily hinted a TV comeback after he stepped out with TV royalty Declan Donnelly last week as well as making a social media return this week

Before his brisk walk, Phillip, who has 2.8million followers, shared a photo of his dog watching Formula One as Phillip relaxed on the bed with him.

He captioned the post: ‘Thankfully, Alfie is a big @f1 fan [heart emojis].’ 

Phil’s daughters Ruby, 27, and Molly, 30, as well as his former This Morning co-host Josie Gibson all liked the post within minutes, in a clear sign of support.

Phil’s last post before Tuesday’s upload was a video posted on May 7 2023 of the star’s trip to Paris. 

Friends of the presenter told The Sun last week that although they have been pushing for him to return to the spotlight, he himself has reservations. 

The source explained that Phillip is being supported by his friends at ITV including Alison Hammond and Ant and Dec. 

Phil and Declan Donnelly were snapped together in London last week after a four-hour dinner at a restaurant close to their homes. 

An insider has told The Sun of Phil’s support network: ‘They have all been rallying around him and their support, especially from Dec who is such a good friend, has really helped Phil.’ 

Hours after he posted his first Instagram post in over a year, Phillip stepped out for a low-key walk with his dog

Hours after he posted his first Instagram post in over a year, Phillip stepped out for a low-key walk with his dog

He seemed in high-spirits as he headed out for some fresh air in the sun around West London

He seemed in high-spirits as he headed out for some fresh air in the sun around West London

Phillip stood down from the daytime show after admitting he had lied about his relationship with a much younger colleague

Phillip stood down from the daytime show after admitting he had lied about his relationship with a much younger colleague

Phillip cut a casual figure in a grey sweatshirt and black skinny jeans, with a rucksack as a stepped out for the low-key outing

Phillip cut a casual figure in a grey sweatshirt and black skinny jeans, with a rucksack as a stepped out for the low-key outing 

‘Some TV executives have been in touch with Phil about a possible return and his friends have told him he should consider it.

‘Phil is still shell shocked by everything that happened last year and is happy at the moment to focus on rebuilding his life with the support of his friends and family.

‘Whether he will make a comeback — whether it’s on TV or radio — is still undecided but the offers are there if he wants to pursue them. His friends have told him they will support him all the way.’

Phillip and Dec’s dinner is the first time the pair have been seen publicly together since the This Morning scandal.

Dec was joined by his wife Ali Astall, while Phil was accompanied by his puppy. 

Onlookers reported that the pair looked in good spirits and were seen laughing and joking together like it was an ordinary night out.  

After Phillip left the show in May, his co-host Holly Willoughby later left in October due to an alleged kidnap plot. 

The pair were officially replaced by Ben Shephard and Cat Deeley in March as the two took on the show full time after a series of guest presenters had been rotating the daytime slot. 

Before his brisk walk, Phillip, who has 2.8million followers, shared a photo of his dog watching Formula One as Phillip relaxed on the bed with him

Before his brisk walk, Phillip, who has 2.8million followers, shared a photo of his dog watching Formula One as Phillip relaxed on the bed with him 

Phil's last post before Tuesday's upload was a video posted on May 7 2023. Just two weeks after that post Philip left This Morning, stepping down from the daytime show on May 20

Phil’s last post before Tuesday’s upload was a video posted on May 7 2023. Just two weeks after that post Philip left This Morning, stepping down from the daytime show on May 20

Phil's This Morning co-host Josie Gibson liked the post within minutes, in a clear sign of support (Josie and Phil pictured in March 2022 on the show)

Phil’s This Morning co-host Josie Gibson liked the post within minutes, in a clear sign of support (Josie and Phil pictured in March 2022 on the show)

Back in March friends of the star have said that Phillip is ‘quite certain’ he will never work again following his admission that he had an affair with a much younger colleague and then lied about it.

One said: ‘Phillip has been very, very down recently. He doesn’t know how he is going to work again. It’s devastating for him to realise but he also knows that there is not a lot he can do about it. He doesn’t know who will take him. He knows there is no way back to ITV or the BBC.’

Sources close to the star say that his friends are trying to encourage him to think he can have a ‘fulfilling life’ away from showbusiness.

One said: ‘Just because he may not be on telly again doesn’t mean he can’t enjoy his life. Phil isn’t so sure though.’

The star has though been tipped for a job on national radio – his ‘first love’ – with Britain’s largest commercial stations said to be jostling to bring him in to woo new listeners from rivals, including BBC Radio 2.

An ITV report in December cleared bosses of a cover-up and did not mention any further damaging claims about Phil’s relationship with a young runner on the show.

Despite claims of a ‘whitewash’, industry insiders told MailOnline that it opens the door to the star  getting a new big-money deal to return to work in 2024. 

But a senior British broadcasting source said at the time that a return to TV for Phillip is ‘unlikely – for now’. 

Phil and ITV star Declan Donnelly were snapped together in London last week after a four-hour dinner at a restaurant close to their homes

Phil and ITV star Declan Donnelly were snapped together in London last week after a four-hour dinner at a restaurant close to their homes 

Friends of the presenter told The Sun last week that although they have been pushing for him to return to the spotlight, he himself has reservations (Phil and Holly Willoughby hosting this morning in May 2023 shortly before Phil resigned)

Friends of the presenter told The Sun last week that although they have been pushing for him to return to the spotlight, he himself has reservations (Phil and Holly Willoughby hosting this morning in May 2023 shortly before Phil resigned)

He said: ‘Now that a line has been drawn in the sand by ITV over the Schofield saga, attention will move on.

‘Within a period of time there is now a place for Phillip to return, possibly not on TV yet, but there are now a myriad of opportunities for him on commercial radio where he will be offered big money to return to his first love. 

‘The KC’s report gives him a fresh chance – but nobody will be surprised at all to see that ITV has found itself in the clear as it tries to save This Morning’.

He quit This Morning after he admitted to a past relationship with a younger male former colleague – but neither men spoke to Jane Mulcahy KC, whose report came out in December.

Ms Mulcahy found that the unnamed runner’s promotion from This Morning to Loose Women ‘had nothing to do’ with Phillip and claimed that also ‘only one person’ interviewed had knowledge of the affair but ‘did not report their knowledge at time’. 

Phillip started out in local radio in New Zealand as a teenager before joining the BBC, hosting a popular show on Radio 1 while presenting Going Live.

It now remains to be seen whether Britain’s most popular stations, such as Classic FM, Magic, Virgin, Heart or other giants now swoop. Greatest Hits Radio has also been on a hiring spree, grabbing big names such as Ken Bruce and Simon Mayo to take listeners from Radio 2.

Furious ITV staff blasted the external report into Phillip’s affair with a younger colleague as a ‘whitewash’.

Phil and Holly were officially replaced by Ben Shephard and Cat Deeley in March as the two took on the show full time after a series of guest presenters had been rotating the daytime slot

Phil and Holly were officially replaced by Ben Shephard and Cat Deeley in March as the two took on the show full time after a series of guest presenters had been rotating the daytime slot

Alison Hammond has also reportedly been supporting the former This Morning presenter

Alison Hammond has also reportedly been supporting the former This Morning presenter 

Phillip also stepped down from Dancing On Ice as Stephen Mulhern took his place for January's series (pictured 2023)

Phillip also stepped down from Dancing On Ice as Stephen Mulhern took his place for January’s series (pictured 2023) 

One employee told the Mail of their ‘sheer bewilderment’ that only one junior worker was aware of the relationship.

The report found that ITV did not cover up the relationship and that station bosses had made ‘considerable efforts’ to discover the truth in 2019 – four years before the affair broke. 

The external review found that the channel was ‘unable to uncover the relevant evidence’ until Phillip’s own admission in May when he told the Mail that he had been having the relationship and that he had later lied about it.

ITV bosses have said both Phillip and his former lover, who has never been named publicly, ‘repeatedly denied’ allegations of a relationship until the star dramatically quit ITV and formally apologised. 

It added that only one person out of 48 interviewed – a junior employee – said they knew about the presenter’s relationship with the younger male former colleague before he revealed it.

Ms Mulcahy revealed that Phillip refused to take part in the review into the circumstances surrounding the his departure because of ‘the risk to his health’. 

She added that she was informed that the host’s mental health had since deteriorated.

Phillip’s former colleague and lover also declined to participate in the report.