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Fern Britton and Phil Vickery ‘often weren’t on speaking terms’ before split

They revealed their split earlier this week

Fern Britton and Phil Vickery’s split reportedly did not come as a surprise to friends.

The 62-year-old television presenter recently announced she is ending her 20-year marriage to her husband and celebrity chef Phil, but insisted the pair will “always share a great friendship”.

And friends of the pair have claimed that they saw the split coming, as Fern and Phil, 58, apparently had their share of difficulties.

Friends of the pair have claimed that they saw the split coming (Credit: Wenn)

Read more: Fern Britton announces split from This Morning husband Phil Vickery

A source told the Daily Mirror newspaper: “Fern and Phil went through periods when they weren’t even speaking to one another.

“There were some really rough patches and it looked like deep cracks had developed. Things were fraught.

Fern and Phil went through periods when they weren’t even speaking to one another.

“They seemed to think it was something that happened to everyone, and it was just the natural ups and downs of any relationship. But those around them worried the damage might be irreparable.”

Ent Daily has contacted reps for Fern and Phil for comment.

Fern announced the split on Twitter, where she wrote: “After more than 20 happy years together, Phil and I have decided to go our separate ways.

“We will always share a great friendship and our lovely children.

“We would appreciate it if our privacy is respected at this time. Thank you for your continued kindness and support. (sic)”

Fern and Phil have 18-year-old daughter Winnie together, whilst the Ready Steady Cook presenter also has twins Harry and Jack, 26, and Grace, 23, with former husband Clive Jones.

The couple tied the knot 20 years ago in 2000, after Fern had split from Clive in the same year following a 12-year marriage.

They met on This Morning when Fern hosted the show alongside Phillip Schofield and the star previously said she never thought she would find love again as a mother of three children.

Speaking previously about the start of their romance, Fern told the Telegraph: “The boys were four; Grace hadn’t even started toddling.

Fern previously said she never thought she would find love again as a mother of three children (Credit: Splashnews.com)

Read more: Fern Britton admitted she preferred a cup of tea in bed than sex with husband Phil

“I remember thinking at the time that nobody was going to take a 40-something woman with three kids. Then, one day at work, someone said, ‘Phil Vickery fancies you.’ And I went, ‘Remind me – which one is he?’

“Eventually, I kidnapped him, put him and his dirty washing – he was single at the time – in my car and drove him home. The next day, he baked me his irresistible gooseberry crumble.”

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