The long-term future of One Direction may be bleaker than first imagined, with a new report suggesting that the British boy band might not return at all after their year-long hiatus they announced back in August last year.

Having wrapped up their On The Road Again tour in October 2015 and released their fifth album, Made in the A.M., weeks later, an unnamed source close to the group has told Us Weekly that the group has decided “not to renew their recording contract”, meaning that they intend to go in separate directions.

“The 1D thing just ran its course. They’ll remain friends, but they are exhausted and want solo careers.” Another insider added that the foursome might not pursue solo careers in front of a microphone.

One DirectionOne Direction at the BBC Music Awards 2015

“Liam [Payne] is really interested in songwriting and production,” the second source said. With Harry Styles the target of Jay Z, who wants to make him the ‘biggest star in the world’, the lead singer has also apparently got his eyes on a “career in acting and singing”, according to the first source.

More: Zayn Malik claims One Direction don’t speak to him anymore

Louis Tomlinson, of course, is going to have his hands full over the next year with first time fatherhood, with his ex-girlfriend Briana Jungwirth set to give birth in Los Angeles later in January.

However, a spokesman for the group denied the new rumour in a statement to The Mirror on Wednesday (January 13th). “This story is fabricated and pure speculation. One Direction have clarified the situation many, many times already.”

This comes after 22 year old Directioner Niall Horan telling Entertainment Tonight being forced to deny the same rumours back in November, when he insisted that 1D’s time apart would only be temporary. “We’re not breaking up… …we're literally taking time out to see our friends and see our family, and reflect on what we've done over the last few years.”

More: Louis Tomlinson moving to Los Angeles to support pregnant Briana Jungwirth