'Dancing on Ice' judge Ashley Banjo praises Phillip Schofield's bravery on ITV show

Phillip Schofield returned to his presenting duties for the first time since coming out as gay. (ITV)

Dancing On Ice judge Ashley Banjo took a moment out of Sunday's instalment of the competition to offer words of support to Phillip Schofield who returned to his presenting duties for the first time since coming out as gay on Friday.

As the 57-year-old presenter and Holly Willoughby went to the judges at the start of the show to comment on the upcoming skates, Banjo took a moment to mention the events of the week.

"Can I just say on a completely separate note that it's been on a big, big week," he began.

Read more: Phillip Schofield coming out is 'massive moment' for him and for society - Stonewall

"You have always been an absolute legend but never ever more so than this week my friend.

“I think I speak on behalf of everyone when I say we have got nothing but love and respect for you," the dancer went on.

Ashley Banjo offered words of support to Phillip Schofield on Dancing on Ice. (ITV)

While Banjo's comments were met with applause from thew audience and fellow judges, Schofield gently retorted: "It's not about me."

Schofield came out as gay in a post to Instagram on Friday morning shortly before appearing on This Morning to discuss his announcement alongside friend and co-host Willoughby.

As well as support from his This Morning colleagues, including Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes, many celebrities spoke out on Schofield's bravery.

DOI’s John Barrowman shared a message to Instagram which read: "So proud of you and your family Phillip. Welcome to your truth and authentic self.

"The nation loves you for who you are! You are @schofe Can’t wait to hug you and don’t worry we got your back we are #LGBTQ+strong welcome to the family."

Schofield explained how he had received support from his wife of 27 years as well as their two grown-up daughters, Molly and Ruby.

He shared in his statement: “This is something that has caused many heart-breaking conversations at home. My family have held me so close: they have tried to cheer me up, to smother me with kindness and love, despite their own confusion. Yet still I can’t sleep and there have been some very dark moments.”