Saturday 21 April 2018

Balding: I was on TV too much

Clare Balding has vowed to do less presenting on television
Clare Balding has vowed to do less presenting on television

Clare Balding has admitted she was on TV too much following her success presenting the London Olympics.

The broadcaster, who recently hosted coverage of the Boat Race, has vowed to do less after presenting everything from the BBC's rugby league coverage to Crufts.

She told Radio Times magazine: "I used to say yes to everything I was offered because I thought it would all stop tomorrow. Now I think it might stop tomorrow precisely because I say yes to everything.

"In 2014 I didn't do a single panel show because they get repeated so much. From December 10 last year when I hosted Sports Personality until I did Crufts on March 10, I was not on television presenting anything. Yet people still say, 'You're on everything'."

The 44-year-old, who married Alice Arnold in a private ceremony earlier this year, said that it was "exhausting" to be constantly asked about being gay.

"I tell you what ... I'm not going to talk in this interview about being gay. I suspect Gabby Logan isn't asked about being married or being a mother," she said.

"I get criticised for two things - doing too much and talking about being gay. But the facts don't necessarily support that I do too much, and I get asked about being gay all the time. Every single interview I do, that ends up being the lead.

"I'm very aware that it's important for people to see a couple in the mainstream. But it can get a bit exhausting. I don't walk down the street saying, 'Hi! I'm gay!'

"At the same time, I want to be one of the people who helps. What am I meant to do? I don't know what the bloody answer is."

Balding added: "I have never wanted children. It's my choice, but of course it's not something that's going to happen by accident. Yes, it could happen if I wished it to.

"I have two nephews, a niece and eight godchildren, and I love that. But I don't want kids. I just never had that urge. One of the many benefits of being gay is that people don't assume you want children, so they don't ask you.

"My brother Andrew's relationship with his wife Anna Lisa is almost as long-standing as mine with Alice, and all they were ever asked is 'When are you getting married?' and 'When are you having children?'. We never got that from anybody."

Press Association

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