In sad news for Blockaholics, veteran judge Neale Whitaker has announced he’ll be stepping back this season after his partner experienced some serious health issues.

In a statement posted to Instagram, Neale wrote, “It’s an amazing privilege to have been part of this iconic show for 13 years.”

“For the 2023 season, however, I’ve put family first and cut back on my judging weeks. My partner of 20 years, David, experienced some serious health issues earlier this year and my priority has been to spend more time at home”


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Real estate guru Marty Fox will sub in for Neale, joining fellow judges Shaynna and Darren for the 17th season of the timeless Australian home-reno show.

Don’t fret however – Neale concludes: “The best news of all is that David is making a great recovery, and I’m looking forward to returning to The Block full time for the show’s 20th anniversary season in 2024”.

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