Simon Cowell has reportedly dropped out of a return to the UK X Factor after revelations he has fathered a child with a friend’s wife.

The music mogul was set to make his comeback on the ITV singing contest, but cancelled his plans at the last minute, according to the Daily Mirror.

He had been due to invite judges Gary Barlow, Nicole Scherzinger, Louis Walsh and Sharon Osbourne onto his yacht in the south of France to tell them which category they would mentor this year, but has apparently dropped the appearance.

Cameras will still follow Simon on his holiday in San Tropez, where he’ll be joined aboard the yacht by sidekick Sinitta, but he will now tell the judges his decision by phone – and in a twist they will be assigned their categories before bootcamp begins.

A source said: “Simon has delayed the original date he was going to set sail on his boat and it is not going to work in his schedule now, so it has been cancelled. His problems and drama off screen are now starting to impact on his TV shows. He even called the UK judges personally to apologise for messing them around.”

It was recently revealed that Simon is expecting a baby with US socialite Lauren Silverman, who is in the middle of divorce proceedings with her husband Andrew.

Simon is still taking part in the US X Factor, but recently cancelled boot camp despite 220 hopefuls waiting to perform for 15 hours and chose the top 40 based on auditions alone.

Meanwhile, Louis Walsh has revealed he is quitting The X Factor after this year’s series.