The first official snap has been released of the new judges at the first X Factor audition in Manchester.
Rita Ora and Nick Grimshaw marked their territory on Wednesday as the first of this year’s auditions kicked off in Manchester. They were joined by returning favourites Simon Cowell and Cheryl Fernandez-Versini. The audition filming was delayed for a few days due to the death of Cowell’s mother, Julie Brett.
The picture, shared via the show’s official twitter account, shows Nick and Rita in the seats vacated by Louis Walsh and Melanie B. Walsh was axed after ten years to make way for a new, fresh X Factor in a bid to appeal to younger viewers. The snap also shows Olly Murs and Caroline Flack, who will be co-hosting the main show, replacing Dermot O’Leary. It was rumoured that Olly was initially offered a judging role, but turned it down.
— The X Factor (@TheXFactor) July 9, 2015
Olly and Caroline were a hit with viewers on ITV2 when they hosted spin-off show Xtra Factor in 2011 and 2012. Auditions will continue in Manchester before moving to London next week. The X Factor is due to return to ITV late next month.