Love Island fans have been left fuming over one controversial rule set out for its new 'middle-aged' spin-off series.

ITV 1 has commissioned a new dating series called 'The Romance Retreat' which will follow single parents who have been nominated by their adult children for a second chance at finding love.

Unlike the current and popular ITV dating series, which is now in its ninth season, the new show would see singletons in their 40s and 50s looking for a partner.

The major announcement comes amid annual calls for a more diverse Love Island cast and concern over whether the reality show's young contestants are mature enough for the experience.

The Northern Echo: Presenter Maya Jama has joined Love Island for its ninth series ( ITV/Lifted Entertainment)Presenter Maya Jama has joined Love Island for its ninth series ( ITV/Lifted Entertainment) (Image: Lifted Entertainment/ ITV)

The Romance Retreat confirmed by ITV opens applications to single parents

A teaser statement reads: "From cringe moments to confessions, the kids will see their parents in a whole new light as they are presented with opportunities to select who they’ll be matched with on one-on-one dates, and who may join the family dinner for years to come."

Many viewers rushed to social media to express their excitement for the spin-off series and their intentions to watch the new programme.

One fan commented: "I’m up for this!"

Another person chimed in: "Here we goooooo!"

However, not everyone was happy to hear of the spin-off with many viewers sharing their frustration at the news on Twitter.

One user commented: "How many more of these ridiculous reality programs can be dreamt up. They are so boring!!!"

A second person said: "Come on isn’t there enough trash on TV already !!!!"

While a third viewer joked: "That will be first 3 weeks of watching people catching up on sleep."

While the reality TV show might not be to everyone's tastes, some fans were upset that they were being excluded from taking part as ITV opened applications.

In the entry form, the show's producers dictate that the series is only for single parents and they need to be nominated by their adult children.

The child needs to be at least 18 years old on or before May 1 2023 in order for them to be considered.

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Some fans have flocked to social media to complain about the rule.

One Twitter user posted: "So older people with no children aren't allowed to be single as well?"

A second fan chimed in, with a message directly to the broadcast, saying: "@itvstudios that’s a poor decision - discriminating against childless singles."

A third person commented: "This is completely pointless. It should be aimed at ALL single parents not just those with older kids."

A disappointed potential applicant said: "Reading terms & conditions it looks like your children needs to be 18 and over! My eldest daughter is 15, so I can't apply."

While another person agreed: "Discriminating against single childless people as usual."

ITV Romance Retreat application

If you are keen to sign up for the mature spin-off and you fit all of the conditions, you need to apply before March 31 2023.

You can see the full terms and conditions and register to apply for the show via the Cast It Reach application form.