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24th Nov 2022

Jonnie Irwin “pushed aside” by A Place in the Sun following cancer diagnosis

Sarah McKenna Barry

Channel 4 and Freeform have stated that his contract was not renewed due to insurance issues.

Jonnie Irwin, who recently shared that he has cancer, has said that he was “pushed aside” from his job on A Place in the Sun.

In an interview with The Sun, Irwin alleged that he received support from Escape to the Country and A Place in the Sun Ltd., (the company that runs the show’s exhibitions, as Metro reports) but not from A Place in the Sun itself.

He told the paper: “I told [A Place in the Sun] that I wanted to work. When I said I can get you doctor notes and assurances from my oncologist that I am fit to work, I was told, verbatim, ‘Oh, you really don’t want to go down that route, do you?'”

He went on to say that the way he was dealt with by the show impacted his mental health.

They said, ‘We don’t think we can get the insurance’ not ‘We can’t get the insurance, but, ‘We don’t think…’ That broke my heart and affected my mental health.”

He explained that he was paid for the remainder of the season, but his contract was not renewed, and he was replaced.

“I just feel I earned a bit more from them after 18 years,” he said.

In a statement, Channel 4 and Freeform pointed to insurance being the reason for Jonnie’s contract not being renewed.

They said: “No stone was left unturned in trying to enable Jonnie to continue his international filming with us during Covid but the production company were unable to secure adequate insurance cover for him.

“We, of course, understand how frustrating this must be for him at this incredibly difficult time.”

Jonnie shared his diagnosis with fans earlier this month.

In an interview with Hello Magazine, he said that he may only have a few months left to live.

He said: “I don’t know how long I have left, but I try to stay positive and my attitude is that I’m living with cancer, not dying from it.”

He explained that he is conscious about maximising his time with his wife, Jessica Holmes, and their sons, three-year-old Rex and two-year-old twins Cormac and Rafa.

Jonnie said: “I set little markers – things I want to be around for. I got into the habit of saying, ‘Don’t plan ahead because I might not be well enough.’ But now I want to make plans. I want to make memories and capture these moments with my family because the reality is, my boys are going to grow up not knowing their dad and that breaks my heart.”