Gary Barlow vows to return to mentor X Factor acts

Gary Barlow has promised to return to The X Factor in time to mentor his acts as they bid to win the hit talent show.

The Take That frontman, who started as a judge on the ITV1 show last year, is still coming to terms with the loss of his child.

Baby Poppy was delivered stillborn just under a fortnight ago when Gary’s wife Dawn, a former dancer, was eight months pregnant.

Gary, who was absent from a press launch for the show in central London on Thursday, said: “Thanks for all the support.

“I’ll be watching the show at home on Saturday with my family and I know you’re going to love it.

“The talent is amazing this year and I’m looking forward to working with and mentoring my acts at judges’ homes and on the live shows.”

But he looks set to stay in the UK for the judges’ homes segment of this year’s X Factor.

Often during that stage of the competition, the panellists take the acts in their charge to sunny or exotic locations and there had been talk of Gary heading to Majorca for the latest series. But he is now thought to be looking at remaining in this country with his acts for the next phase of the series, which begins on ITV1 on Saturday.

Last year the Take That star was in Los Angeles, where he was accompanied by bandmate Robbie Williams.

But a show source said Gary “doesn’t want to go too far, understandably”.

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