First Dates star dropped as Channel 4 ‘freshen up team’ and move to Manchester

First Dates returned with a twist on Tuesday evening, and one familiar face was noticeably absent.

NHS hero and waitress Laura Tott was missing from the new episodes following the show's move up north to Manchester.

Laura has been helping singletons find love on the Channel 4 dating show since the start, but did not take part this time round amid a major shake-up.

Taking to Instagram, Laura shared a lengthy statement to her 189k followers about why she would no longer be on the series.

"As you can see I do not appear in the new series of First Dates," she wrote.

"They have moved up north to a new restaurant and wanted to freshen up the team for this series with some new local faces among the old faces, so I will not be featuring in this new series of First Dates unfortunately."

Laura continued: "To be honest I don't actually know how I would have fit filming in this year with working during the pandemic, I've needed every day off to chill out so it's actually been a welcomed break. I've missed the whole team though that's for sure.

"This doesn't mean it's over and I'm still very much part of the First Dates family and hopefully I'll be back again real soon."

She added: "Can't wait to watch the new series. Good luck to the new waiters/waitresses this series."

First Dates' French maître d'hôtel Fred Sirieix was quick to comment on the post with a heart kiss emoji.

Someone else commented: "Proud of you always, it won’t be the same without your beautiful face x."

Another person added: "You will be missed Laura, but you are doing a phenomenal job for the NHS."

Laura, who has travelled the world as part of the Royal Navy with HMS Raleigh in Cornwall, was working in a bar in Windsor when she got the gig through a friend who worked in TV.

While working in the Paternoster Chop House restaurant in Central London, Laura brought smiles to the faces of customers and viewers.

During filming for First Dates, she started training to be a paramedic in 2016 and qualified three years later.

  • Channel 4
  • NHS
  • First Dates

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