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Thursday, 24 January, 2002, 20:13 GMT
Hear'Say to continue without Kym
Hear'Say held crisis talks on Friday
Hear'Say had been holding crisis talks
Hear'Say have finally admitted Kym Marsh has quit, less than a year after winning a place on live television.

The remaining four members have vowed to carry on with the group, promoting new material and carrying out a massive UK tour.

Hear'Say had been holding crisis talks to try and avert Marsh's departure but the band's Danny Foster finally told BBC One's Top of the Pops that she had left.

But he added: "Hear'Say will go on."

Kym Marsh
Kym Marsh is dating EastEnders star Jack Ryder
The group rose to instant fame after winning the final of Popstars, beating off competition from thousands of hopefuls.

Their two singles and debut album went straight to number one, but subsequent releases have fared less well.

 Click here to watch Hear'Say perform Pure and Simple on Top of the Pops

There had been constant speculation the female members did not get on and the final straw came when Marsh and Myleene Klass fell out over a trip to entertain troops in Oman.

Marsh was reportedly happy to do the show but became increasingly uncomfortable when she discovered a film crew would be recording the events, feeling it had become a publicity stunt.

The mother-of-two also started a high-profile relationship with EastEnders star Jack Ryder.

Suzanne Shaw told Top of the Pops presenter Jamie Theakston: "Her commitments changed to the band, I don't blame her for that."

The departure of Marsh was one of the worst kept secrets in showbusiness, and bookmakers had already put odds on Hear'Say becoming the next band to split after the demise of Steps.

Subdued

It is expected Marsh will embark on a solo career, while the remaining members of Hear'Say attempt to put the battles behind them before going on tour.

Myleene Klass
Klass and Marsh have denied the rumours of a rift in the past
A spokeswoman for Top of the Pops said: "The band seemed pretty shocked to be honest and were quite subdued."

There has been speculation that Pop Idol contestants Rosie Ribbons and Zoe Birkett are being lined up to replace Marsh.

This has been denied by Pop Idol producers who insist nothing has been discussed and that all contestants are under contract to 19 Management.

A spokeswoman for the show said: "None of the contestants would want to be in Hear'Say because they are all determined to pursue solo careers.

"They have shown that they have the talent to do that, but those who have been linked to the band are flattered."

See also:

18 Jan 02 | Music
Crisis talks for Hear'Say
14 Jan 02 | Music
Hear'Say in talks over Kym
30 Nov 01 | Reviews
Hear'Say race against time
28 Dec 01 | Music
Bookies tip Hear'Say split
26 Dec 01 | Music
End of the road for Steps
24 Dec 01 | Music
Chart stars and flops of 2001
05 Feb 01 | Entertainment
To Popstardom and beyond
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