Amanda Holden has launched into an astonishing attack on fellow Britain’s Got Talent judge Simon Cowell, suggesting his lack of punctuality is leaving the rest of the panel exhausted.

In an interview with Good Living magazine, the actress claimed that the mogul’s tendency to turn up late for auditions had resulted in far longer working hours for her and fellow judges David Walliams and Alesha Dixon.

“I have to take a deep breath each year before we go into it because we work extraordinarily long hours, mainly because of Simon,” she said.

“If he started at 10am like the rest of us, rather than one or two o’clock in the afternoon, then we’d all finish by 8pm.

“But we don’t, we all finish at around midnight.”

Amanda – who also denied reports of rows between her and Alesha Dixon during last year’s series – also took the opportunity to criticise The X Factor, saying that it was aimed at a different audience.

“Simon’s told me off before for saying this but I just think it’s very hard to keep judging singer after singer after singer,” she said. “I don’t see it as a family show. It is aimed at a certain age group.”

However she did have some kind words for Simon, adding: “We all know he can take a joke and he’s not as mean as he comes across.”