As One Direction gets ready to take an extended break in 2016, the band visited its first home, The X Factor stage, one more time during the U.K. show’s live finale on Sunday night (Dec. 13). Niall Horan, Liam Payne, Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson performed “Infinity” and “History,” and Simon Cowell wished them well with their upcoming time off.
“Well, this takes me back five years ago when I met five guys, singing as solo artists, and then I never could have predicted what happened next. And I know you’re gonna take a break, you deserve the break. I want to really just take the chance now to say thank you. You’ve been an absolute pleasure to work with … Five of the nicest guys I ever met. Enjoy the time off. Have a fantastic time,” Cowell said to the band.
Several others also paid tribute to One Direction with goodbye messages via a video that was played while the show aired, including James Corden, Robbie Williams, Wayne Rooney, Danny DeVito, Jack Whitehall, Little Mix, 5 Seconds of Summer and David Beckham.
Shortly after, One Direction posted its own video to fans on Facebook, thanking them for the support they’ve shown for the past five years. Throughout the evening, fans on Twitter trended the hashtag #ThisIsNotTheEndOfOneDirection.
“This is just a massive, massive thank you to all of our fans,” Liam Payne said in the clip. “Obviously you guys made all of this happen for us, and we can’t believe the way that you’ve supported us over the last five years. Today’s a very special day for us because this is like the last part of our first chapter.”
“We cannot believe you guys,” he continued. “You’re amazing — the most dedicated people I think we’ve ever seen in our lives. So thank you for enjoying us over the years, and I hope there’s many more years to come.”
Watch One Direction’s X Factor performance below, as well as the band’s thank-you video to fans on Facebook here.