Gloria Hunniford has exclusively given HELLO! readers a peek inside her star-studded photo album as she celebrates her milestone 80th birthday this week. Sharing a selection of snapshots with past interviewees in this week's issue, Gloria, from her home in Kent, says: "I don't feel or act my age. I regard it as just a number. I genuinely don't think about it." As for her immaculate looks, she laughs: "I'm old school. I won't go out of the door without my make-up on. I blame my mother, who wouldn't even go to the shop without hers on."
Watch: Sir Cliff Richard surprises Gloria Hunniford with an exclusive birthday greeting
The vivacious TV presenter – who's a panellist on ITV's Loose Women and co-host on BBC1's Rip Off Britain – added: "Family is very precious, and I live for mine. Having children is the best thing I've done. I speak to my sons and grandsons every day. I'm Irish, so you never want your children far away."
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Gloria and Sir Cliff Richard in Barbados in the nineties
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The proud mum and grandmother, along with her sons Paul and Michael and her husband Stephen Way, had planned a birthday dinner last weekend at London's Langham hotel – and was intending to spend her actual birthday at her home in the South of France – but celebrations have been put on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The presenter back in 1982 with Julio Iglesias
"I'm going to have a belated 'Glo' birthday," she smiles, telling us it has been rescheduled for 5 October, on what would have been her daughter Caron Keating's 58th birthday. Caron sadly died from breast cancer in 2004, leaving behind her sons Charlie, now 25, and Gabriel, 22.
Gloria poses with Audrey Hepburn in 1988
Gloria also reveals how Sir Cliff Richard, a close friend for 50 years, was her rock, alongside her family. The singer is among those sending their best wishes to the birthday girl; Sir Cliff, incidentally, turns 80 in October. "He's fantastic. We met through broadcasting in Northern Ireland when he came on my show," she says. "I interviewed him frequently over the years, and one day I got a call inviting me over for tea by the pool and a game of tennis. That cemented our friendship." Watch Sir Cliff's exclusive birthday greeting above.
Read the full interview in this week's issue of HELLO! magazine out now.
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