Pop trio Atomic Kitten have announced they are taking a break, but have denied they are parting for good.
Atomic Kitten (from left to right): McClarnon, Hamilton, and Frost
The decision was made because singer Natasha Hamilton wanted to spend more time with her 17-month-old son Josh.
The group's publicists say the other two members, Jenny Frost and Liz McClarnon, are considering solo careers while Hamilton is taking a break.
Hamilton said: "I knew the time would come when I needed to take time out - luckily the band's in great shape."
She added: "I've not really had a moment to be with Josh consistently and properly since he was born, having released two albums and six singles since 2002 and promoted them around the world."
Hamilton, 20, thanked Frost, 21, and McClarnon, 25, for supporting her.
"I have wonderful mates in Jen and Liz, at my management company and at Innocent Records who support me completely."
Hamilton had to take a short break from the group last year after suffering from post-natal depression.
'Not the end'
In a statement released on their website, the trio told fans they will return.
It read: "There is no doubt that lots of people will be saying that the girls have split up for good, but the truth is that's not the plan. Take it from us, 'This is not the end'."
Masterminded by former OMD frontman Andy McCluskey, Atomic Kitten first came to prominence in December 1999 when their single Right Now reached number 10.
The group then included I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! contestant Kerry McFadden, who left in 2001 and has recently worked as a TV presenter.
She was replaced by Jenny Frost, who came on board shortly before the first of their three number ones, Whole Again.
Covers of The Bangles' Eternal Flame and Blondie's The Tide Is High also hit number one.
Before their break, Atomic Kitten start a 16-date tour at Plymouth Pavillions on 18 February.
A greatest hits compilation will follow the tour's last date, at Hull Ice Arena on 11 March.