Judi Dench opens up about love life: 'I don't like the word partner'

Judi left David at home while visiting Borneo for Judi Dench's Wild Borneo Adventure

Emmy Griffiths

Judi Dench is all set to star in the new Cats film, and visited The Graham Norton Show to chat about her role. Ahead of Saturday night's show, find out everything you need to know about her relationship with conservationist David Mills. The star previously chatted to Good Housekeeping about David, and admitted that she doesn't like the term 'partner', and instead refers to her beau as her "chap". She said: "I don't know what the word is because I don't like the word 'partner'. Partner is something to do with dancing. Partner - horrible word. Friend? No. Boyfriend? No. Chap? Will chap do?" 

The 85-year-old ruled out tying the knot with David, who she met in 2010 when he invited her to open a squirrel enclosure at a wildlife centre in Surrey. She said: "He is not going to propose. No, no, no, no, no. Let's just pull ourselves together and be our age!" Judi was married to fellow actor Michael Williams for 30 years before his death in 2001, and the couple share one daughter, Finty.


Judi and David met in 2010

Speaking about her relationship with David, Judi added: "I have a jolly nice friend now. One hot night during the summer, we swam and then had a glass of champagne in the garden and I said, 'This is so fantastic'. But perhaps if I was a romantic I'd have been cool and calm about it. I get a bit over-excited about things. I love having a good laugh. A sense of humour is the most attractive thing of all. It's essential."

READ: Judi Dench admits she can't travel alone due to poor eyesight


Judi refers to David as her 'chap'

Judi is currently taking part Judi Dench's Wild Borneo Adventure, in which she explores the beautiful island by visiting an 100 million-year-old rainforest, comes face-to-face with animals including sun bears and orangutans and discusses the wildlife with experienced conversationists. In Tuesday night's episode, the Dame will be visiting an orangutan orphanage.