Little Mix taking break after '10 amazing years'

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Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
The group attended the premiere of Boxing Day, which stars member Leigh-Anne, earlier this week

Little Mix say they're "taking a break" after their 2022 tour, but insist they're not splitting up permanently.

The group shared news of their hiatus on social media on Thursday evening.

"It's been 10 amazing years, a wonderful non-stop adventure, and we feel the time is right to take a break so we can recharge and work on some other projects," the group posted.

"We can't thank you enough for your love and never-ending support since the beginning. We love you all SO much."

'Little Mix is forever'

Despite the announcement, the group say they already have plans for more music, tours and performances in the future.

"We've made so many incredible memories with you all, and we can't wait to make so many more," they said.

"We're sisters and we'll always have each other and you, the fans, in our lives. Little Mix is forever."

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

Ashton Braithwaite's been a fan of Little Mix for the full ten years, and he says he's OK with the trio's decision to take time out.

"I think most of us saw it coming anyway. Ever since Jesy left, we thought this would be the route that they took," he tells Radio 1 Newsbeat.

Ashton says before Little Mix, he would only listen to R&B and hip hop - but now describes himself as a "massive pop-head".

Image source, Ashton Braithwaite
Image caption,
"It's sad but it's not the worst thing in the world," says Ashton, who's looking forward to the future of Little Mix

Kirsty Hillitt remembers voting for Little Mix on X Factor in 2011 - and has tickets to see them in Cardiff in 2022.

"I'm so, so gutted really. I love their music and I'm gutted we won't be hearing it from a while," she tells Newsbeat.

"But coming from a personal level, I can completely understand the girls needing to recharge, they've grown so much in the last 10 years. They've got to have a dabble at other things."

Image source, Kirsty Hillitt
Image caption,
Kirsty says she's "gutted" but hopes Little Mix get what they need from their hiatus

But this isn't the first time a massive pop group has announced a temporary split, only for years to pass without getting back together.

When One Direction separated in 2015, that was only described as a "temporary move".

But Ashton and Kirsty are confident in Little Mix's promise to fans, and their strength as a group.

"I'm pretty optimistic about it," says Ashton.

"Little Mix have a different chemistry than other groups, they're very close. I do believe them, they've always delivered on their promises."

And Kirsty says fans can see the trio's connection through their interactions with each other and their followers.

"I feel like, when that connection is there, it's not going to go anywhere," she says.

"They've supported each other through their own projects, and that's the difference to when you see some bands breaking up - you know it's not there any more."

When Newsbeat spoke to Little Mix on the red carpet at the 2017 Brit Awards, they told us they were "never splitting up, ever."

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

Kirsty says she hopes Jade, Leigh-Anne and Perrie all "get what they want" from their time apart.

Ashton says he'll be following their solo work closely and believes Little Mix fans will follow them each in whatever's next.

2021 for Little Mix

The group went from a four-piece to a trio when Jesy Nelson quit in December 2020, but have had a string of hits in the 12 months since.

Their biggest hits of 2021 have been Heartbreak Anthem with Galantis, and Confetti with Saweetie.

The remaining members - Perrie Edwards, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Jade Thirlwall - released their first greatest hits album last month, just a few months after both Perrie and Leigh-Anne had babies.

Responding to the news, fans supported the group's decision and thanked them for a decade of pop bangers.

"We'll miss you but your little ones are your priority," wrote one fan.

"We are so unbelievably proud of what you have all achieved," said another.

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
In 2011, Little Mix beat Marcus Collins and Amelia Lily to win the eighth season of X Factor in the UK

Little Mix was formed on The X Factor in 2011 - and were originally called Rhythmix.

The name was changed after a charity of the same name threatened legal action.

Their first two singles - X factor victory song Cannonball, and Wings - both went to No.1 in the UK charts, and they have scored at least one Top Ten hit in every year since.

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