22/08/2020 09:43 BST | Updated 22/08/2020 14:07 BST

Olly Murs Says He 'Still Hurts Every Day' After Caroline Flack's Death: 'There's A Massive Hole In My Life'

The singer said he had "never experienced that level of friendship before" as he spoke about his special relationship with the late star.

Olly Murs has spoken candidly about the death of close friend Caroline Flack, saying he is “still struggling” to come to terms with it. 

The singer – who presented The Xtra Factor with Caroline for two years before they then fronted one series of The X Factor together in 2015 – said the Love Island star had left “a massive hole” after taking her own life in February. 

“When you do lose someone that you care about and you love, I’m still struggling,” he told Vicky Pattison’s The Secret To… podcast (via The Sun). 

David M. Benett via Getty Images
Olly Murs and Caroline Flack

“It still hurts every day thinking about what she must have gone through.

“When you’re grieving you’re just finding things. I had voice notes from Caroline for years.

“I had a three-year WhatsApp conversation and somehow it had been deleted.

“I’d only got the last year of our conversation and I was going through my phone looking for voice notes just wanting to hear her voice again, hear her conversation, just searching for things.”

Julian Parker via Getty Images
The pair hosted The Xtra Factor together before being promoted to the main show

Olly continued: “Me and Caz didn’t speak or message every day but there’s a massive hole in my life without Caz in it.

“I just miss those moments of crazy stories where we’d WhatsApp or ring each other and have the most random conversations about the most random things. I’m going to miss that forever.

“I know that goodbyes are not forever. I know I’ll see her again at some point so I look forward to that day.”

Danny Martindale via Getty Images
Olly and Caroline were first paired together in 2011

Olly also opened up about the undeniable chemistry he had with Caroline, after they were first paired up to host The Xtra Factor in 2011. 

He said: “We had fights. We had great moments together. We argued. We had everything.

“We just had a special chemistry. People thought we were together. We weren’t together. We never, ever got together. We never ever pulled each other. We never did. 

“We were just always like brother and sister. I don’t know, it was a weird friendship. I’ve never experienced that level of friendship before. We had a chemistry and connection.”

Danny Martindale via Getty Images
Caroline and Olly had a special chemistry that extended beyond TV screens

Olly added: “For Caz to not be here any more, it’s hard. It’s difficult.

“It doesn’t get easy but I’m just fortunate I have so many great memories with her and have so many amazing times with her that I can look back on, and I’m very fortunate a lot of it is documented and a lot of it is on TV.”

Caroline was found dead at her home in Stoke Newington, north-east London, in February this year.

She was awaiting trial after pleading not guilty to charges of assault, following a row with her boyfriend Lewis Burton in December 2019.

At an inquest into her death earlier this month, her mother said Caroline had been “seriously let down by the authorities” and was “hounded” by the press over her forthcoming trial in the weeks before she died.

A coroner later ruled her death as suicide, saying she had “no doubt” that the star intended to take her own life.

Useful websites and helplines

Mind, open Monday to Friday, 9am-6pm on 0300 123 3393.

Samaritans offers a listening service which is open 24 hours a day, on 116 123 (UK and ROI - this number is FREE to call and will not appear on your phone bill).

CALM (the Campaign Against Living Miserably) offer a helpline open 5pm-midnight, 365 days a year, on 0800 58 58 58, and a webchat service.

The Mix is a free support service for people under 25. Call 0808 808 4994 or email help@themix.org.uk

Rethink Mental Illness offers practical help through its advice line which can be reached on 0300 5000 927 (Monday to Friday 10am-4pm). More info can be found on rethink.org.