Press Conference With...NOEL EDMONDS

Noel Edmonds and I last met in November 1986 when hod carrier Mike Lush tragically died while rehearsing a bungy jump for the Late, Late Breakfast Show. I was on my third or fourth shift for The Sun and was sent to doorstep "Mr TV" along with the rest of the pack. Through sheer journalistic brilliance, I got the only interview and it was the scoop of the day.

(Well, I arrived late and bumped into him in his local restaurant. We reached an agreement.)

So, we are together again 20 years on and, disturbingly, Noel doesn't look much different. He's 57 now, but still has the slim figure, that bouffant of highlights and the sandpaper deep, geometrically clipped goatee. (These days that's dyed, too, he happily admits.)

Although Noel looks the same, a lot has happened during those decades. His career went, then came back with House Party, then it went again. His 18-year marriage to Helen also went, as did the Devon estate. Thanks to the press, Noel's life has appeared to have been in more awkward positions than a work-out given by a crossdressing Pilates instructor.

But now Noel is back. His personal life has straightened out and he's enjoying a relationship with a French woman he met while buying a house in the South of France. He is close to his four daughters — aged seven to 23 — and things are cordial with his ex.

Work-wise, he has a runaway hit with Deal Or No Deal, which has put him back in the heaving bosom of Luvviedom. Even the press are — generally — loving him now.

Hell, if you believe his conciergestyle Cosmic Ordering service, Noel's even got the bloody Universe onside.

Read the full interview in this week's Press Gazette or at www.robmcgibbon.com

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