Ashley Banjo and wife Francesca Abbott split after 16 years together and share emotional statement
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Featured Image Credit: @ashleybanjogram/Instagram
Diversity star Ashley Banjo and his wife Francesca Abbott have announced they are splitting up after 16 years together.
Banjo and Abbott, who is also a dancer, got engaged in 2014 after meeting and falling in love when they were just teenagers, and they tied the knot one year later in 2015.
The pair share two children together, three-year-old Rose and two-year-old Micah, but last night (22 December) they each took to their respective Instagram accounts to share the news that they have gone their separate ways.
The post, shared to both of their Stories, explained the pair decided to separate nearly 18 months ago but made the decision to share the news this week 'after much thought and consideration'.
The statement continued: "After being together for over 16 years, since we were teenagers, this is not a decision that has been taken lightly. It has not been easy and the processing of the situation has not been fast by any means. But we feel that as we approach the new year it is time to share this news with others."
Banjo and Abbott stressed that their 'main focus' will always be their children, saying every decision they've made so far has been to 'make sure we can continue as a loving family and give the very best of ourselves as parents'.
"But we do so lovingly and we continue to try and be both the best parents possible and the best of friends to each other," they added.
The post concluded: "We have always been private with our personal lives, so we kindly ask that everyone please continue to respect that privacy. We won't be making any further comment on the situation. Thank you... Lots of Love."
Banjo has previously revealed that he took Abbott to the Science Museum for their first date in 2005, before he'd learned to drive.
In a post on Instagram, he wrote: "14 years ago I couldn't drive, so I took this girl on a date to the science museum to try and make her laugh and impress her with how much I knew about the nerdiest subjects possible instead."
The dancer shot to fame after Diversity won the third series of Britain's Got Talent in 2009.