Christine Lampard has presented her first edition of ITV’s Lorraine this morning for the summer holidays and ahead of her return to the role, Christine discussed life, hope and hairdo.
The former One Show and current Loose Women regular has spoken about her life in lockdown, her hopes for the future and not worrying if she forgets to brush her hair before going on camera.
The TV host will be taking the helm for two stints from Monday July 20th to August 7th and then again from August 24th until Lorraine returns on September 1st. While Andi Peters will be in the hot seat for the first time for two weeks from August 10th to 21st.
As Lorraine Kelly passes the baton over to the seasoned presenters, the show is reporting record viewing figures. During lockdown, ratings across the ITV daytime shows have soared with Lorraine’s time slot reaching more than 6.2 million in one week alone and viewing up 56% – the biggest week ever for the show.
Are you looking forward to being back on Lorraine this summer?
I am looking forward to it. Everything has been up in the air, I didn’t know what studio we would be in or anything like that. So, I was sort of on standby for anything. I’ve been quite relaxed about it because the Lorraine family are all very friendly and close. I know they’ve done a brilliant job of making it feel as normal as possible and I can’t wait to see them all.
You have to give Lorraine full credit, because she has found a way of dealing with everything and motored on as she always does. She has been fantastic over the past months. She hasn’t had a day off, so this holiday is very well deserved. I’m sure she’ll be enjoying herself.
Everything is a little different in the studio due to lockdown, how will you find those changes?
I have been lucky because I’ve been on Loose Women throughout all of this. Obviously, we’ve had a couple of women in the studio and we’ve had one of our women at home and all of our guests are ‘down the line’ [on video calls]. It’s strange and I’m sure it’s the same for everyone in this mad set up, you just adapt and actually you adapt very quickly. I like having guests in the studio and being able to have a chat before you go on air, that’s part of it for me.
But the fact that we can talk to people, it’s actually fascinating seeing them in their own environments. It’s all of those little things, like seeing their homes and I think guests can actually be more relaxed. It doesn’t really bother me as long as everything is technically ok. But even that, viewers are much more willing to excuse things that may go wrong because everyone knows what it is now. I just think it’s as relaxed as we can be and we get through it as best we can. It doesn’t really bother me at all, at least we still have people wanting to come on and talk. I’m happy with that.
Hit for the Beeb: The One Show with Christine and Adrian Chiles.
How have you found lockdown?
I’m seeing my family for the first time at the moment. That’s been the hardest thing for me. I’m lucky that’s all I’m finding difficult, because so many people have lost loved ones at this horrendous time and experienced some real hardships. Not being able to see your family for me has certainly been the worst aspect of it. I normally like to try and get home once a month or they come over to see me. But obviously that’s not possible and so many families are in the same situation.
When I finally got to see my family, it was emotional, which I’m sure everyone across the country has been finding. We have been in touch constantly throughout, but when you have a little one, you really appreciate the relationship they have with their grandparents and I don’t like them not being part of that and missing out on all the tiny things they do day-to-day.
My mum has been very stoic and realistic. You have to think of everyone else that is suffering way more than we are. I can’t get it out of my head how families have coped with their loved ones in hospital with this disease and not being able to be there for them.
Has lockdown had an effect on Patricia, do you worry it’s made her more clingy?
I am 100% her world because I’ve been with her 24 hours a day. Frank actually being at home for a big chunk at the beginning of lockdown was fantastic, as much as it was for the awful reasons we were there. It was just lovely. Patricia is like, ‘I’ve got mummy, and mummy is not talking to you, she just deals with me’. That’s what her little life is at the minute. But funnily enough when we finally got to see my family this week, she went crazy for them.
A decade ago Christine and Adrian lead a new-look for ITV Daytime with the launch of Daybreak.
How are you going to find being back to work in the studio every day?
Frank has been back weeks now and I’ve been doing Loose Women as well. It’s strange when you have work, you feel a little bit normal.
I don’t think Patricia will worry about me doing Lorraine every day. The timings mean I will only really miss her breakfast, which Frank will do, but I will be back early and I’ll still be able to put her down for her nap and spend the rest of the day with her and put her to bed in the night time. I don’t think she will miss me that much, thankfully. She’s at that age when it’s still very manageable as there’s no having to drop her off at school.
The studio is very, very different. On Loose Women we don’t have an audience, we miss them terribly as it’s a bit like having a fifth woman on the panel. And we are all very close. The fact that the social aspect has gone has really changed the show behind-the-scenes. You wouldn’t really know on screen, but being in a studio where we all have to sit two metres apart with hand sanitizer everywhere, is very different. But at the end of the day, it’s very workable and we are just very lucky that we can still carry on doing what we love to do.
Have you rushed straight out to the salon since they’ve re-opened?
I haven’t been to the salon yet. I know a lot of people have really missed going to the salon but I’ve actually enjoyed just letting my hair grow. I’ve not had anything done with it at all. I have missed getting my hair done, as in a blow dry, that’s my favourite thing. But getting it coloured, I haven’t coloured it at all.
In fact, I haven’t coloured it for I don’t know how long. I get the odd grey hair that will crop up and I will get rid of it and that’s that but I haven’t had to dye all the roots and all of that business. So, I have been fairly lucky on the hair salon front although I’d really like to get my nails done!
There’s no hair and makeup on set and none of that bothers me, to be honest. I just miss the girls who do it. One time during Loose Women I suddenly thought, ‘Oh my goodness I haven’t even looked at myself before going on camera’. I thought, ‘I haven’t brushed my hair, have I’? But now I’m like, ‘Does it matter?’ And it doesn’t really matter anymore does it? No one really cares as much. There are different standards and people are much more forgiving. I’m all for that.
Hosting Celebrity Haunted Hotel for UKTV.
How have you been keeping fit and healthy during lockdown?
I walk lots and I’m lifting Patricia every day! I do as much walking as I can and it will be with the dog and the baby. I never sit down. I’m on the go constantly with her and then come 7 o’clock, I feel like I’ve been hit by a truck. I’m sure all mums of young children can relate to that though! There weren’t any online exercise courses [for me], I’m afraid. When I watch that kind of stuff, I switch it off.
I did bake banana bread, but I would do that anyway. That’s not a pandemic lockdown thing in my house. Jamie Oliver had a series on cooking during lockdown and I cooked five of his dishes, maybe more. And they were all fantastic. Frank loved every one. So I did cook quite a bit more I must admit and tried new things because I cook anyway. Even with shopping, I never went to one of the big stores where everything was running out. I just went to my local shops. It really paid off because I think they were brilliant at keeping everything topped up.
What’s the biggest life lesson you’ll take from this time?
I guess like many, it sounds a cliche now, but just appreciating the little things. Just being able to go out for a drink with your friends or being able to see your family. All I wanted was to sit down and have a cup of tea with my mum and the fact that I couldn’t do that absolutely broke my heart. Like so many of us, I struggled with not being able to see my parents.
Thankfully we’ve not been ill but some really good friends of ours have been. A good friend lost a father-in-law and one of my sister’s best friends lost her grandmother and her mother had it too and fortunately survived. We all know people who have been affected. I’ve been in touch with Kate Garraway through this. I mean, what a year she’s had. She started off in the jungle, which was a remarkable experience, with Derek being so much involved and her children being in the middle of it and then to hear she is going through this nightmare along with so many thousands of families, it’s just awful.
We all love Kate. She’s one of my favourite people in telly. It’s been so dreadful but so wonderful to have her back on the telly and hopefully for her too to have a little bit of normality.
Love: for Good Morning Britain’s Kate Garraway.
Are you anxious about getting back out and about more?
Because we’ve both been working, Frank’s been away, he gets tested twice a week and he’s in a hotel twice a week, it seems like we’ve almost been fast-tracked into ‘the new normal’ a bit quicker than the rest of the world just now. That’s just what it’s been, going back to everyday life might be a bit odd but we have to be grateful we are able to do it.
What have you been looking forward to doing now that lockdown is slowly easing?
Seeing my family and taking them out for lunch has been top of the list. To order food and not to have to clear up after me. That’s the most exciting thing. It’s absolutely fantastic and spending some time with my family and all those little simple things. Being able to sit together. I haven’t been to a bar or any of that. Even that will be quite exciting I guess. I’m looking forward to all those little things over the summer.
Christine is a regular on ITV afternoon discussion series Loose Women. (Andrea, Nadia, Saira and Jane)
You’ve been in TV a long time now, what would you consider your career highlight?
I still pinch myself when I’m doing Lorraine’s show. It’s Lorraine Kelly! She has worked on the telly my whole life. She’s a complete stalwart of television, she’s the ‘Boss Lady’. To think she, hopefully, feels like I’m in any way up to scratch to keep things ticking along until she comes back again, means a great deal to me.
I admire her greatly. I never get bored of it. I never say, ‘I’m going into work today’, I say, ‘I’m doing Lorraine today or Loose Women’. I can’t quite get the word ‘work’ out and that’s a real blessing if you find something in your life you enjoy, you never have to work a day again.
Just getting to talk to people, lots of real-life stories that pull on the heart strings. When would you get the chance to do that in your life, really? To take a moment to experience someone else’s life and to help put their voice across. I think they are really special moments and I never get bored of that at all. It still excites me.
Lorraine with Christine airs weekdays at 9am on ITV, STV and UTV
Lorraine Kelly has been a staple part of ITV Daytime since 1984, starting on TV-am.