It really was hand-to-mouth and you can say, 'Poor little me, how dreadful, what a deprived childhood', but I didn't feel that way at all. It's all about the attitude at home.
I cannot do the piece-of-talking-meat thing, the 'Here's your money, wear a pretty dress and take the cheque.' I'm not made that way. I have to be as good as I can be at whatever I do.
I was away a lot on 'Countdown' when the children were young and I couldn't have done it without Mum's help. Because she was at home running all of that, I never had to worry about them.
Turning 50 changed me and I'm far more accepting of myself. I'm not thin, but I am a size 10. I go in at the middle and very much out at the bottom and top. And now I think, 'Well, that's how I am.'
Gerard Manley Hopkins