Inside Eamonn Holmes' bitter battle as star lost house before Ruth Langsford split

Eamonn Holmes on TV
-Credit: (Image: (Image: ITV))

Eamonn Holmes has opened up about the intense strain he faced during a lengthy five-year battle with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), before his split from Ruth Langsford.

The 64 year old TV icon was forced to sell his beloved Belfast home to cover a massive £250,000 tax bill, on top of what is believed to be a substantial amount in legal costs. Despite Eamonn's argument that he worked as a freelancer for ITV, a 2020 tribunal determined he was an employee, leading to a demand from tax authorities for backdated national insurance and income tax payments spanning several years.

In a heartfelt interview with The Irish Times, Eamonn described the experience as "the most stressful outside of losing my father" and said: "I had a house here [Belfast] until six weeks ago when I was forced to sell it by the Inland Revenue [HMRC]. It's something I'm very bitter about because people think you earn lots of money and therefore you have to pay. It's like they have taken away everything I ever worked for."

He also highlighted the broader impact of such tax disputes, adding: "People think it's only the Eamonn Holmeses of this world that they're after. But it's not. The country is broken. I was like a lamb to the slaughter it was the most stressful, humiliating experience."

His health struggles were also triggered, including a serious shingles episode in 2018 that "looked as if someone had taken a baseball bat to my face and smashed me about a bit" and could have resulted in blindness.

Recent months have seen Eamonn needing the aid of a wheelchair and cane for mobility after undergoing spine surgery due to chronic back pain, reports the Express.

Eamonn Holmes on GB News
Eamonn Holmes on GB News

The unexpected news of the breakdown of Ruth and Eamonn's marriage after 27 years together was announced this weekend. They revealed their separation with a joint statement: "Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes have confirmed their marriage is over and they are in the process of divorcing."

Worries had been escalating for the beloved pair, who served on ITV's This Morning together for many years, when fans noted their absence from shared photos in recent months. An insider attributed the split to work commitments "taking their marriage in different directions", adding that they are "determined to stay friends and keep things amicable" for their 22 year old son, Jack.

The Mail on Sunday has reported that Eamonn, who is reportedly "furious" about the split, has now vacated the family residence in Weybridge, Surrey.