Simon Cowell announces he will quit TV role to spend more time with his family

Music mogul Simon Cowell will step aside from his lead judging role for upcoming ITV singing competition, Walk The Line.

The 62-year-old has announced he will be replaced by Take That’s Gary Barlow, who also replaced him on The X Factor from 2011 to 2013.

Cowell is reportedly stepping back to spend more time with his family and on the behind-the-scenes of the show.

‘Gary’s musical pedigree is second to none’

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    He shares seven-year-old son Eric with girlfriend Lauren Silverman.

    Speaking to The Sun, Cowell said: “This is a situation where I have decided it is right for me to focus on my role as the creator and producer as we build up to the hugely exciting launch.

    “Gary’s musical pedigree is second to none – and we have known each other a long time now – so I am delighted he is picking up the baton for me for the first series of Walk The Line. I know he will do a fantastic job.”

    Cowell’s appearance on Walk The Line was scheduled to mark his return to UK television after breaking his back when he fell off an electric bike he was testing at his house in Malibu in August last year.

    The show will offer musical variety acts a chance to win a prize pot, but to win the money they must decide if they want to cash out or risk it all to stay in the competition.