Friday 28 October 2016

Zoe Ball and husband Norman Cook announce separation 'with great sadness'

Published 24/09/2016 | 21:21

Zoe Ball and Norman Cook are separating
Zoe Ball and Norman Cook are separating

Zoe Ball and her DJ husband Norman Cook - better known as Fatboy Slim - have announced their separation after 18 years together.

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The pair said they remained "great friends" in a statement posted on Twitter, adding they "will continue to support each other and raise our beautiful children together, living next door but one".

Ball and Cook wed in 1999 and have two children together.

The statement added: "With great sadness we are announcing that we have separated. After many exciting adventures together over the last 18 years we have come to the end of our rainbow."

Earlier this year Ball, 45, spoke of the couple's future plans, saying they hoped to run a "pub, come post-office, come pet shop" when they retired.

The Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two host has in the past paid tribute to 53-year-old Cook as "a very patient man", following a number of rocky patches in their relationship.

They split for a few months in 2003 after she had an affair with DJ Dan Peppe, and was pictured in December having a drunken kiss with 22-year-old Tay Tay Starzh of boyband Franklin Lake.

But Ball insisted the pair had laughed off the slip-up, saying: "He (Cook) has always said he wants his gravestone to read: 'Norman was a very patient man'. And that sums it up really!"

After the picture emerged she told how the pair had a " good understanding of each other" and said the reasons they met and fell in love initially were still there.

The couple were both known for their hard partying ways.

Cook, who became one of the UK's leading DJs and producers, responsible for hits including Praise You, spoke about how the arrival of their second child felt like a gift after they both went sober.

Nelly was born in 2010, at which point the couple already had their nine-year-old son Woody.

Shortly after their daughter's birth Cook said: "Zoe and I both gave up drinking so this baby is a present of our sobriety. It was a tough start to the year but we're both much happier. It's all settled in at the Cooks' household."

The DJ, who will be performing a charity gig in London as part of the Oxjam festival next month, described himself and Ball as "a good tag team" in raising their children.

Press Association

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