Matt Baker has bid a fond farewell to The One Show in a very unexpected and unusual way.
Tuesday's episode (March 31) marked the final time Matt would host with long-time on-air partner Alex Jones, and followed two weeks of Matt having to work from home in self-isolation due to a member of his family showing coronavirus symptoms.
He once again stayed home for his final show and was joined by Bob the Dog, with Alex asking if it felt odd since they'd had to cancel his leaving party in light of the COVID-19 outbreak.
"Uh, yeah," he admitted. "But to be honest with you, it's not essential travel for me to come in and say goodbye when I could do it from here. It is slightly odd, of course."
The episode featured tributes from many of the young people who worked with Matt on Red Nose Day's Rickshaw Challenge as well as celebrities such as Britain's Got Talent judge David Walliams and legendary actor David Suchet.
"We've had some good times," Matt told a tearful Alex. "I've loved every single second of sitting alongside you. I've watched your life change as well, getting married, two children.
"It's quite amazing, really. We've been together for nine, nearly ten years now. That's rare in the world of television."
Alex also struggled through her tears to share how she felt working with Matt for all of these years.
"I know when you're going to breathe because we've been together that long, and we've had such a laugh along the way," Alex said. "I thank you, honestly, from the bottom of my heart."
She added: "Of course, off-screen we'll continue to be friends. I'll be on the phone straight after this!"
Though there had been questions of whether Matt's final day on The One Show would be delayed by the coronavirus pandemic, Alex confirmed this week that his exit would go ahead as planned.
Alex also revealed that The One Show was not rushing into replacing Matt, and would instead have a series of guest hosts over the next several months.
"Matt nailed it, but it's a hard job. And it's got to be someone I can have a laugh with," he explained.
The One Show airs Mondays through Fridays at 7pm on BBC One.
The information in this story is accurate as of the publication date. While we are attempting to keep our content as up-to-date as possible, the situation surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to develop rapidly, so it's possible that some information and recommendations may have changed since publishing. For any concerns and latest advice, visit the World Health Organisation. If you're in the UK, the National Health Service can also provide useful information and support, while US users can contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
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