The X Factor removed: 7 Sussex ties to a hit talent show

The X factor was removed after 17 years.

The last full series of the talent TV show aired in 2018, although a celebrity edition aired the following year.

After attracting around 10 million viewers at the height of its popularity, the reality series has suffered a sharp decline in viewership in recent years as creator Simon Cowell decided to call it a day.

However, the show, which began airing in 2004, has been the launch pad for many top-selling UK acts, from One Direction to Little Mix.

The program has also featured a number of Sussex-based stars over the years.

Here’s a list of the Sussex contestants (and judges) to appear on the show.



Chico, real name Yousseph Slimani, shot to fame in 2005 after reaching the quarter-finals of the TV talent show.

The 49-year-old was born in Wales but moved to Morocco aged two. He returned to the UK aged 14 and attended Hazelwick School in Three Bridges.

He once revealed that he played football alongside England’s Euro 2020 boss Gareth Southgate at school.

Chico released the only number one of his career in 2006 – It’s Chico Time.

Simon Cowell

The Argus: Simon CowellSimon Cowell

In 2019, Simon was named Brighton’s third most influential person.

Despite not living in the city, the former X Factor judge ranked third on the Brighton Power 100.

Simon’s late mother, Julie, lived in Rottingdean.

Before her death, she told The Argus she wanted her son to marry at her local church – St Margaret’s Church, near her home in Ovingdean.

Frankie Cocozza

The Argus: Frankie Cocozza, from BrightonFrankie Cocozza, from Brighton

The Brighton-born singer shot to fame on The X Factor when he appeared on the ITV show in 2011.

The musician married Bianca Murphy in Brighton in May 2018. He was pictured in Bartholomew Square after the ceremony.

He is currently the lead singer of British pop-rock band The Telescreen.

Tommy Luford

The Argus: Tommy Ludford, of Rye Tommy Ludford, of Rye

The singer, from Rye, was controversially kicked off the show in 2018 after One Direction member and judge Louis Tomlinson backed up the two contestants in a chant.

This meant that Tommy, who was not involved in vocals, was eliminated from the show.

Tommy, who was 20 at the time, wowed the judges during his audition after performing a song written by himself. He got four yeses.

Daryl Markham

The Argus: Daryl MarkhamDaryl Markham

The singer appeared on the show in 2009, impressing the judges with a moving performance he dedicated to his brother, Gary, who died of lung cancer the previous year.

Daryl’s emotional first appearance racked up over seven million views on YouTube.

He was eliminated from the process after bootcamp.

The former carpenter is now the boss of the Seaford substation.

Chloe Jasmine

The Argus: Chloe JasmineChloe Jasmine

Chloe Jasmine, a model from Sussex, won four yeses after a performance of Sonny Burke’s 1948 song Black Coffee in 2014.

Mentored by Cheryl Tweedy, formerly Cole, the singer finished the competition in 13th place.

Showing up on the show, the 30-year-old said she was from Sussex and was educated at a private boarding school.

When asked what she liked, she replied “Just normal stuff, polo, Henley, croquet.”

Alejandro Fernandez-Holt

The Argus: Alejandro Fernandez-Holt Alejandro Fernandez-Holt

The singer, who performed Enrique Iglesias’ Hero at the arena auditions in 2013, was then a student at Brighton.

Judge Gary Barlow called the then 17-year-old’s first audition cheesy and “too drama school”.

He was eventually sent home by Judge Louis Walsh.

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