Monday 24 October 2016

Charlie Bird labels himself 'one of the most heterosexual men in the world' ahead of marriage next week

Published 06/05/2016 | 23:20

Retired RTE Journalist Charlie Bird Pic: Tom Burke
Retired RTE Journalist Charlie Bird Pic: Tom Burke

Declaring himself to be “one of the most heterosexual people in the world”, former RTE correspondent Charlie Bird revealed he is looking forward to his upcoming nuptials next week – the same week his new book on the Same Sex marriage referendum hits the shelves.

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The 66-year-old divorced father-of-two and grandfather said he is ready to tie the knot again with his long-term partner, RTE staffer Claire Mould.

The couple, who have been together for a decade, met at a Bruce Springsteen concert here and have been together ever since, he told Ryan Tubridy on The Late Late Show this evening.

“She’s so much fun. She’s great craic,” he said.

He said his future bride shares his love of hillwalking and other outdoor pursuits  and the pair just clicked.

Mr Bird, who was married for 24 years to the mother of his children, Mary O’Connor, said he is ready to settle down again after splitting from her in 1998.

He dated former RTE Washington correspondent Carole Coleman for several years but they parted ways and Ms Coleman married an American doctor and now lives in Maryland.

Looking tanned, relaxed and healthy, RTE’s former chief news correspondent said he is not ready to slow down yet after taking early retirement from RTE in 2012 after 38 years with the State broadcaster, following a brief stint as Washington correspondent in 2009.

“Just because you’re 66 doesn’t mean you should be on the scrapheap,” he said.

He revealed he is currently working on various projects, including his  recently-published book called “A Day in May” which chronicles the lead-up to the historic Marriage Equality referendum last May.

The book includes 50  powerful interviews with members of the LGBT community in Ireland and their family and friends, which he said was inspired by his involvement chairing the ‘Yes Campaign’ in last year’s referendum even though “I consider myself to be one of the most heterosexual people in the world.”

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