One Direction's Harry Styles minds the gap as he gives Caroline Flack the flick
Published 27/01/2012 | 07:57
TEEN heartthrob Harry Styles (17) has dumped his girlfriend TV presenter Caroline Flack (32) it is reported today.
The couple who met on the X Factor in 2010 where he was a contestant and she was a presenter of the Xtra Factor, have caused controversy given their 15 year age gap.
According to reports in The Daily Mirror today the boyband member called time on their romance ahead of One Direction heading to the States for a tour. A friend told the paper: “Harry is being realistic about the whole thing. He is going to America in a couple of days and wants to be able to commit fully to making the band a success in the States.”
Styles sent a message to his fans on Twitter confirming he was now single, but denied it was a one-sided move.
He wrote: "Please know I didn't 'dump' Caroline. This was a mutual decision. She is one of the kindest, sweetest people I know. Please respect that."
Flack, who hosted the backstage coverage of the National Television Awards on Wednesday night, kept quiet about the split, simply tweeting about her "great night", then complaining about her hangover the next day.
Styles, who turns 18 on Wednesday next week had been targeted at the band’s recent concerts with banners from fans calling to whistle “if you hate Caroline Flack.”
Flack was said to have been jeered by fans at a One Direction concert last week in London.
"Caroline was spotted within minutes of entering," one concert goer recalled. "The mainly female audience started pointing and jeering, and making a few unsavoury comments.”
Flack last year admitted to receiving death threats from One Direction fans. She told one reporter: “What’s hard for me to get my head around is people saying it’s disgusting. I keep thinking, ‘What have I done wrong?’ But I haven’t done anything wrong.”
The couple’s relationship filled newspaper columns, with many commentators saying their relationship was inappropriate given that Styles was still a teenager and not legally allowed to drink or drive and that Flack being a woman in her 30’s had different expectations of a relationship than someone of Styles’ own age would have.
Rebecca Ferguson who was a runner-up in the same year on the X Factor and dated Styles’ fellow One Direction band member Zayn Malik (19) joined the debate when she told one magazine she did not think Flack should have got involved with Styles.
Ferguson who is 25 and a mother of two told the magazine: “I think there's something not right about Caroline and Harry's relationship.
“For me and Zayn it was different, because he was 18 so at least he could drive over to pick me up, we could go for a drink in a bar together and he was old enough to make his own decisions.”
It seems Styles was old enough to make the decision to end the relationship now.