Charlie King
King previously dated co-star Gemma CollinsGetty

Charlie King, a former star of ITV's The Only Way Is Essex, has come out as gay on live TV.

The 28-year-old restaurateur, who previously dated co-star Gemma Collins, finally addressed rumours about his sexuality during an appearance on This Morning.

"Our stories will help people, there is a way out. You are not alone. I want to be a positive person, telling people 'you can do this'", he told hosts Phillip Schofield and Amanda Holden.

"I had a girlfriend, she was the first person I spoke to and told. It was a proper relationship but I was very aware when I was seeing her that things weren't quite right. If something doesn't click, it doesn't click."

"I feel so positive about this," he added.

Fans may recall that while dating Collins, King grew close to 27-year-old Bobby Norris, who confessed to falling for him. Collins also questioned King's sexuality on multiple occasions.

But despite the rumours, King always denied being attracted to men.

"People don't know how to work me out," he told Kirk Norcross, a promoter for the Sugar Hut club in Essex who also appeared on TOWIE. "I've never said I would say no to a same sex relationship. I put my hand up to that. I want it all to happen naturally."

Following his shock announcement, King was quickly inundated with supportive messages from fans and fellow celebs.

But not everybody was pleased about his decision to come out of the closet. Collins appeared to take a swipe at her former lover in a cryptic message posted on Twitter.