Ashley J Baptiste leaves The Risk

Fans of The Risk, we hope you're sitting down – we've got some bad news. Ashley J Baptiste has decided to leave the band.

The 22-year-old, who was put into The Risk with Charlie Healy, Derry Mensah and Andrew Merry by Tulisa at Judges' Houses, made his shock decision on Thursday. And despite attempts by the other boys and Tulisa to persuade him to stay, Ashley had made his mind up.

There were a lot of tears shed and the other Risk boys were all gutted but all three told us they supported the tough choice made by Ashley.

Now for some good news! And boy, do we need it. After a bit of thought, Charlie, Derry and Andrew decided they couldn't carry on as a trio and wanted to stay as a foursome... so guess who they chose to come and join them?

Well, we can exclusively announce that at 6pm on Friday evening, Ashford Campbell from Nu Vibe became the newest member of The Risk, after our talented trio requested him specifically – a request supported by Tulisa.

So with only 24 hours to go until our Halloween Week Live Show this Saturday night, our new-look The Risk line-up is locked in rehearsals in a bid to pull off their most spook-tacular performance yet.

Ashley told us: "It's been a really tough decision but I have decided to leave The Risk. I don't believe my future lies in a boyband and it's not fair on Charlie, Derry and Andy to remain in the band when I am not truly committed to it for the long term.

"I believe The Risk can win The X Factor and I'm backing them all the way. I count them as my friends so I know we'll stay in touch."

As a group, The Risk added: "We're devastated that Ashley has decided to leave but we respect his decision.

"After taking in the news we decided that we didn't want to be a trio, we really wanted another member. We have always liked Ashford, right from Bootcamp, and always had a strong bond with him.

"He's mega talented and will bring so many qualities to group. We're so glad he said yes and we can't wait to get rehearsing."

And mentor Tulisa told us: "I'm gutted to see Ashley go, we'll all really miss him but we respect his choice and wish him all the best for the future.

"The Risk boys really wanted Ashford to replace Ashley and I think he's got a great voice, he's a fantastic fit and I totally support their decision."

The final word goes to a delighted Ashford, who said: "I couldn't believe what I was hearing when I got the call! I had to speak to the Nu Vibe boys first and once they gave me their blessing I was straight back on the phone to grab the offer. It's unbelievable and now I've got to work even harder after my break!"

So there we have it people. The Risk live on, minus Ashley but plus Ashford. You'll see their first performance on Saturday night's Live Show from 8pm on ITV1. You really won't want to miss it. We'll be glued!