Welcome back! What made you decide to come back to the show this year and how does it feel to be back?
Well aside from a lot of begging and grovelling on Mr Cowell’s part, it just felt like the right time to come back. I’d had enough time away to appreciate it and get really excited to find new talent again.
Did you have any first day nerves when you started the auditions again or was it like riding a bike?
This time it was like riding a bike. The first time I did it I was terrified, but this time I was more excited.
Is there a particular type of contestant you are looking for this year – a specific genre, category, or music style perhaps?
I’m always looking for somebody fresh. I’m never looking for the next whoever; the next Justin Beiber, the next One Direction. I want somebody to come in that we don’t quite know if we get it or not. Something fresh that we haven’t got.
You once described Simon as your ‘frenemy’ – do you still think of him like that? How would you describe your relationship with him now?
I think Simon’s a bit like an annoying brother. We’re like brother and sister and he’s the annoying one.
We’ve heard that Simon has been winding you up during filming for the auditions – what’s he been doing and have you got your own back?
Simon has his very own way of being very annoying. He knows which buttons to push and he’ll push them, and push them, and push them. But I play the long game. I’m waiting. Don’t worry about me, I’ll get my own back.