What have you been watching on TV recently?
I’ve been a Corrie fan all my life, but I haven’t seen it for months so I’m about to sit and watch about six of them. I’ll have a good weekend watching that with lots of cups of tea. I’ve loved Liar too – so clever – and Narcos. I used to be a news junkie but I’m not in that loop, I don’t want to be.
You live in Bristol. What’s your living room like?
I have a nice comfy sofa in my Georgian town house and a big TV screen above the mantelpiece. I have 30 candles around the room and I light them all – candles everywhere. My ideal evening in would be a cuddle on the sofa, a bottle of champagne and Narcos. That’s what I did last night, actually.
Does your perfect night out involve champagne, too?
I go out a lot. I am a party animal, let’s not lie about this. Richard Whiteley used to say to me, “Vorders, you could make trouble in an empty room.” He wasn’t wrong. People have an image in their heads of who I am and it’s really quite wrong. The party side of me isn’t a side that generally I allow to be seen. I went to see Rag’n’Bone Man in concert recently and ended up on someone’s bed in the tour bus. I’m like a grenade you pull the pin on. Life is never, ever dull.
Does it bother you how much people are obsessed by your love life and appearance?
I have a thick skin because I’ve been around a while. If I were younger I’d be annoyed because there’s an obsession with looks now, in a way that there never was. It’s utterly hypocritical, because people go, “It’s what you do, not how you look, that matters” then report on exactly the opposite. They just mind about what you look like.
Especially as a woman…
Only if you’re a woman. Although there are many more advantages or opportunities now, somehow society’s managed to balance that out with more negatives. I don’t care what trolls say or what people think, I just get on with it.
You’re now a qualified pilot – will you do that solo trip around the world you’ve been planning?
Yes, definitely. I think in 2020 or sooner. My plane, Mildred, is in San Diego now, she’s in a hanger two miles away from the Top Gun runway, and from January I’ll be spending a lot of time there flying with my friends who are test pilots and astronauts. Flying has given me a whole new life. It’s given me freedom.
You’ve hosted the Pride of Britain awards since they began in 1999. Can we expect more tears this year?
We’ve had so many awful things this year – Grenfell Tower, the Manchester and London attacks. We’ll be celebrating the emergency services and how people came together.
Carol Vordermon hosts the Pride of Britain Awards, Tuesday 8pm ITV