Former daytime TV presenter Judy Finnigan has opened up about her retreat from the spotlight, saying "television sucked the life out of me".

64 year-old Finnigan, alongside husband Richard Madeley, presented on daytime television for 21 years on ITV and on Channel 4. A switch to digital station Watch in 2009 saw the couples' show viewership dramatically drop, spurring Finnigan to withdraw from presenting duties.

"I never felt secure on television and don’t miss it at all" Finnigan explains to The Daily Mail. "I didn’t like being in the limelight, and at times it felt as if I was on a treadmill. TV sucked the life out of me".

"Richard still works on his TV projects because he’s much more gregarious than me and loves the spotlight, but I’ve given all that up now."

After their ill-fated move to digital, Finnigan explains: "Richard had more followers on Twitter than our show had viewers, I’m not saying I wish I hadn’t done it because we got paid a lot of money, frankly".

"But it was incredibly hard work, and for what? The viewers couldn’t find us. So we decided to call it a day, and that gave me a chance, finally, to write my book" Finnigan adds.

After her departure from television, she began writing a fiction novel, Eloise, which is based upon her experience of close friend and television presenter Caron Keating's battle with cancer and Finnigan's own process of mourning Keating's death.

"A career in TV is just footprints in the sand – here today, very soon gone", she adds. "But it’s a lovely feeling to hold a book you’ve written, something that can’t be switched off."