Newlyweds Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford invite TV Times on their honeymoon as they take over This Morning for the summer
So, this summer stint on This Morning will be extra special…
Ruth: “Yes – it will be the first time we do This Morning as husband and wife.”
Eamonn: “Unless we are divorced by then!”
Ruth: “It depends how the honeymoon goes. No, it’s great – we really enjoy our Fridays together, but in the summer months we can do lots of different things.”
Will being married change your on-screen relationship?
Eamonn: “Yes – I think there will be a new deference and a respect that will be due to me.”
Ruth: “Eamonn thinks I will obey him just because we are married, but he is very much mistaken. I haven’t obeyed him for 14 years, I’m not going to start now.”
Eamonn: “I don’t like the word obey, I prefer the word ‘heed’!”
But do you feel differently now?
Ruth: “It’s funny. People always asked me whether I felt different when we got engaged. And I did, actually, it really surprised me.”
Eamonn: “You felt lucky?”
Ruth: “Haha. No, I did, I found it very romantic. It will be interesting to see whether I feel different again after we are married. Planning a wedding is such a lovely feeling, knowing all your family and friends and the people you love, and hopefully love you back, will be in that room.”
How did Eamonn pop the question?
Ruth: “We were at Cheltenham races, I was aware that Eamonn had left the room, and I was having a lovely time, my horse had just won, and I’d had a few glasses of Champagne. When we were being driven home he kept saying: ‘Is that your phone beeping?’ He was going on and on. So I got my phone out, and there was a beautiful love letter, a text that was pages long. At the end, it just said: ‘Will you marry me?’ It was absolutely, completely out of the blue!
Eamonn: “I’m just sentimental, that’s my failing. I suppose the main thing is that, after all the time being with Ruth, I still fancy her. For 63 years of age, she’s not doing too badly!”
Ruth: “He always does that. I heard him this morning on Sky, going: ‘She’s not bad for an old bird!”
So it was out of the blue for you as well, Eamonn…
Eamonn: “It was completely out of the blue.”
Ruth: “What? You’d never thought of asking me to marry you before?”
Eamonn: “Darling, I’d constantly thought about asking you to marry me. No, like most people, I think even we assumed we were married. It was one of those moments – I was in a room, I could see the male attention Ruth was getting, so I felt a bit of jealousy but also a profound love. From that point of view, I thought: ‘Why have I not sealed this deal, tied up these loose ends?'”
Ruth: “Especially at your age…”
What was the reaction from friends and family?
Ruth: “Our son Jack immediately asked if he was going to be a page boy, because he was at our friends’ wedding. I said of course you are. But then he said: ‘Oh no, are you and dad going to have to kiss!?’ He is eight, so he’s a bit worried about that!”
What are you looking forward to about being married?
Ruth: “I’m really looking forward to saying ‘my husband.’ When you are a certain age, saying ‘my boyfriend’ sounds pathetic, ‘my partner’ sounds like we are in business. So I never know what to call him.
Eamonn: “You’ve got a few names for me…”
What is it about your partnership that translates so well onto the screen?
Eamonn: “Well, you can’t fake it. You do take liberties with your real life partner, it is a telepathic relationship, there is mutual understanding and respect – and then there’s the mutual disagreement.”
Ruth: “You can create on-screen partnerships, but because we are a real-life couple, we go beyond that. When we are talking about snoring, Eamonn can say: ‘Ruth is a terrible snorer’, which is true, by the way! And I think people really relate to that. There is a lot of banter, but I hope that people also see that there is a lot of love there as well.”
Eamonn: “When we appear on This Morning, there will always be a domestic the audience can live through. Your life becomes a soap opera – and we are the Jack and Vera or Stan and Hilda of daytime TV.”
What do you each bring to the TV partnership?
Eamonn: “I think Ruth brings an intensity and an honesty to what she does on air. And she is incredibly caring. What I like about working with Ruth is that she reminds me why I went into this business. She still has a certain naivety that I said goodbye to a long time ago. And that reminds me why I love doing what I do. The only thing better than doing what I love to do is doing it with Ruth.”
Ruth: “Eamonn is a maverick – it is a bit like being on a rollercoaster working with him. He never sticks to scripts, which challenges me, and I think I maybe slightly rein him in and save him sometimes from being too outrageous! I love working with him. I think he is the best live broadcaster this country has got, actually. So for me it is a great honour to work with him – and if he wasn’t my husband…”
Eamonn: “You’d fancy me?”
Ruth: “I would want to work with him anyway – and, yes, I would quite fancy him…”
Ruth and Eamonn will be hosting This Morning throughout the summer on ITV1.