Two shows fronted by Paddy McGuinness have been axed by the BBC – marking the latest blow to the comedian turned presenter’s television career.
McGuiness, 49, was the frontman for both Catchpoint and I Can See Your Voice, but will be losing the Saturday evening primetime slots just four years after leaving ITV for the corporation.
It comes after work on the latest series of Top Gear was paused after Paddy’s co-host Freddy Flintoff was seriously injured in a crash while filming.
And it has been claimed Question of Sport has lost millions of viewers since Sue Barker left as host, with McGuinness replacing her last year.
It comes amid a turbulent period in his career after ITV’s dating favourite Take Me Out was axed after 11 series in 2020.
Paddy McGuinness and then partner Christine pictured attending the Pride Of Britain Awards 2021
McGuiness, 49, was the frontman for both Catchpoint and I Can See Your Voice (pictured), but will be losing the Saturday evening primetime slots
He initially shot to stardom alongside fellow Bolton comedian, the hugely popular Peter Kay, in Phoenix Nights after working as a lifeguard and fitness instructor at a leisure centre for more than seven years.
During an interview with Absolute Radio in April 2021, McGuinness revealed that he made more money while working at Horwich Leisure Centre than on the beloved show, adding that he was scared to leave the role.
Phoenix Nights followed McGuinness and Kay in their jobs as security guards at a working men’s club in Bolton.
Kay played multiple roles in the 2001 show, including the club’s owner and main character Brian Potter.
McGuiness, meanwhile, continued working at the leisure centre during filming for Phoenix Nights until he shot to fame with Kay in Max and Paddy’s Road to Nowhere in 2004.
Amid the success of the show, he took the decision to go into the entertainment business full-time.
Following on from Phoenix Nights, the Channel 4 series saw the pair reprise their roles as bouncers, but this time following their trials and tribulations as they took to the roads of Britain in a motor home.
Alongside stand-up tours, McGuiness continued to make regular TV appearances, including a stand-in role on This Morning and two series of Rory and Paddy’s Great British Adventure with comedian Rory McGrath.
He then landed the presenter role for ITV’s Saturday night primetime show Take Me Out, which would see a single man arrive on stage in a ‘love lift’ before being greeted by a panel of 30 women.
All the women have a ‘light’ on and the man has to try and convince as many of the ladies as possible to leave their lights on for him before he picks which girl he likes.
When the guy had found his match, the couple would then go on a date to the fictional location of the Isle of Fernando’s in Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife.
But the show was cancelled by bosses in February 2020, with ITV saying the programme had ‘run its course’ after airing for nine years.
It has also been claimed Question of Sport has has lost a significant number of viewers since McGuinness took the presenting spot
Catchpoint, where two teams compete to win thousands of pounds by answering questions, has been axed
A TV source said at the time: ‘ITV and Paddy have done all the specials you can eke out of a dating show, so it’s been decided it’s time for it to go.’
A year before the show was axed, though, McGuiness landed a coveted role as one of the three Top Gear presenters with Freddie Flintoff and Chris Harris.
And in 2021 he began hosting Question Of Sport.
But in July last year his marriage to Christine, whom he wed in July 2011, hit the rocks when his wife found Instagram messages to a BBC presenter, The Mail on Sunday revealed.
McGuinness is understood to have exchanged a series of messages with the woman in March, shortly before he and Christine, who have three children together, decided to live separate lives following 11 years together.
While there is no suggestion that the messages went beyond friendship, informed sources said that Christine was upset after finding them on his phone.
One friend said: ‘Paddy had been messaging the woman for some time. They were direct messages and were quite friendly.
‘It’s unclear how they met but they followed one another for a while.
‘There have been various issues between him and Christine, but this was definitely one of the driving forces that began to make them assess their future as a married couple.’
Phoenix Nights followed McGuinness and Kay in their jobs as security guards at a working men’s club in Bolton
The comedic pair shot to fame together through the TV series Max and Paddy’s Road to Nowhere
Speaking to The Sun On Sunday at the time, Christine hinted at serious strains in the marriage, adding: ‘I don’t want to go into it too much, but I will just say that I didn’t cause this situation.
‘You’ve got to expect it when you’ve been together for so long. Everyone grows and changes, and we’ve grown as a family, which is amazing. That family bond will always be there, no matter what.’
Last month, McGuinness appeared to be missing his wedding ring as he was spotted out in Cheshire.
He had continued to wear his wedding band in the months following their break-up.
The Top Gear host then hit back at rumours that he had cosmetic surgery over Christmas during his weekend away in Turkey, slamming them as ‘unfounded’.
He said: ‘Hello there, I’ve come on here today to address the unfounded rumours that I’ve had a bit of work done over Christmas.
‘Yes, I’ve been to Turkey for a long weekend, but there’s absolutely no truth in that I’ve had a bit of work done. This is just a tan and I’ve had a couple of cans of that Prime.’
But McGuinness has now also lost both presenting roles on the BBC’s Catchpoint and I Can See Your Voice.
A TV insider told The Sun: ‘This will come as a real blow to Paddy, who’s made a firm commitment to the Beeb since he quit ITV four years ago.
Following on from Phoenix Nights, the Channel 4 series saw the pair reprise their roles as bouncers, but this time following their trials and tribulations ad they took to the roads of Britain in a motor home
Freddie Flintoff, Chris Harris and Paddy McGuinness pictured in their roles as hosts of the BBC’s Top Gear
‘Both I Can See Your Voice and Catchpoint saw him retain his place as a star of Saturday night TV, something he forged fronting dating favourite Take Me Out on ITV.
‘But these axings mean that’s effectively gone, so he’s likely to be looking for new projects to fill the void.
‘He remains hugely popular with viewers, who see him as a relatable and funny bloke they want to welcome into their living rooms. He is likely to bounce back in some way.’
It has also been claimed Question of Sport has lost a significant number of viewers since McGuinness took the presenting spot.
The BBC sports quiz show was fronted by Sue, 66, from 1997 until last year when she was replaced by McGuinness – with audience numbers dropping to an average of 850,000 this series, according to The Sun.
One episode on August 19 peaked at 750,000, with the programme being beaten by a Channel 5 show about a farm shop.
McGuinness (pictured at the Pride of Britain Awards hosted at Grosvenor House, London, in October last year
McGuinness is understood to have exchanged a series of messages with the woman in March before separating from Christine
Between four and five million viewers regularly tuned in when Sue was host before she was given the boot in 2020 when bosses decided to refresh the programme.
Filming for Top Gear has also been paused while co-host Flintoff takes a break from TV work.
The ex-England cricketer said he is ‘putting his career on hold’ until he is in ‘a better place’ following his accident.
The former sportsman was airlifted to hospital after being involved in a horror smash during a drag race involving fellow presenters Paddy and Chris at the show’s test track at Dunsfold Aerodrome in Surrey.
McGuinness also left a very flirty comment on married Amanda Holden’s Instagram page earlier this month.
Commenting on her lingerie snaps for Valentine’s Day., he wrote on her post: ‘B****y hell’, prompting amusement from one fan who said: ‘Me likey, me lighty’.