Steps star Claire Richards was left emotional when she was forced to discuss her unsuccessful attempts to have another baby on ITV’s Lorraine today.

The singer had been chatting about her solo career and upcoming tour when Lorraine Kelly brought up the fact that Claire, 41, shed 6st in the hope of having a third child.

“You know what it’s like, if you’re a woman in the music business and you dare to put on a little bit of weight, everyone wags their finger and has something to say about it,” Lorraine, 58, said.

“But you wanted to lose weight for a very special reason. You wanted to have another baby.”

Claire – who has two children with husband Reece Hill – seemed to hesitate a little before replying: “Yeah we did at the time but it wasn’t to be so…”

Lorraine continued to quiz her on the topic and asked: “Have you given up with that?”

The music star then started to give her answer and her voice appeared to crack as she discussed the subject.

“Yeah I think so,” Claire explained. “My youngest (Daisy) is eight now, and Charlie just started secondary school.

“So I feel like maybe that ship has sailed. And I think, there is lots to do over the next few years, so I think if it happened at the time, then great. But, yeah.”

Lorraine then changed the topic but many viewers were critical of the host for asking about the sensitive topic.

lorraine kelly

“I can’t believe @lorraine just asked Claire about trying for a baby! Why do people think questions like that are ok? Especially on TV!” one watcher tweeted, whilst another agreed: “It was so intrusive! I can’t think why she would bring that up, and Claire looked uncomfortable answering it. Deeply personal.”

Meanwhile one posted: “@reallorraine Ohhh did you really have to ask @_ClaireRichards those questions…past is past..maybe focus on her NOW..she is doing great!”

Claire has spoken in the past of how she was told by a doctor that her yo-yoing weight may have damaged her hormone levels and therefore affected her chances of conceiving again.

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And then we go for a walk by the lake! #happydays #familytime #Love #sundaywalks #lake #freshair #funtimes 💗 @reecehill1 @charlie_y7 and Daisy x

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“My husband is in the same mind as me, really, he said to not blame myself,” she told The Mirror in 2015. “When the doctor first told me, I was annoyed at myself and then upset and horrified I might have caused the problem.

“But I have become calmer about things and we are counting our blessings.”