TV Presenter Phillip Schofield

150 150 Rob McGibbon

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Published: 26 May 2012

TV presenter Phillip Schofield:

The prized possession you value above all others...An EMI 2001 television camera. They’re very rare and an iconic symbol of TV. I found mine recently via Twitter and I aim to get it working again. 

The unqualified regret you wish you could amend...Not learning the piano. I’d love to be that person playing during a singsong at a party. It’s too late now.

The way you would spend your fantasy 24 hours, with no travel restrictions...I’d wake up with my wife Steph in the Maldives and have breakfast by the beach on the island of Villingili. We’d have lunch on a friend’s boat in St Tropez, then drive a Bentley from San Francisco to Death Valley in California.

Then we’d head to Little Fistral beach in Newquay, Cornwall, with our daughters Molly [18] and Ruby [16] and have fish and chips from Flounders chip shop. We’d end the day with dinner at Ackergill Tower hotel in the Scottish Highlands, followed by a bonfire on the beach with a bottle of Old Pulteney whisky.

The temptation you wish you could resist...Finishing a bottle of wine! It’s beyond me to re-cork an open bottle.

The book that holds an everlasting resonance...Jancis Robinson’s Wine Course lit the touch paper to my wine odyssey in the mid-1990s. I have about 8,000 bottles in my collection now. 

The priority activity if you were the Invisible Man for a day...I’d break into a building at the end of The Mall that’s covered in vines. No one will tell me what it’s used for so I’d finally find out.  

The pet hate that makes your hackles rise...People who refuse to reverse down the single lane track near our village in Oxfordshire.

The film you can watch time and time again...The Lion In Winter from 1968 with Katharine Hepburn and Peter O’Toole. Hepburn is my movie idol because she was so fearless.  

The person who has influenced you most...My school careers advisor in Cornwall, Bruce Connock. He fixed it for me to spend a day at BBC Plymouth when I was 13. 

The figure from history for whom you’d most like to buy a pie and a pint...Elizabeth I just before she made her ‘heart of a king’ speech at Tilbury in 1588, in which she inspired her men to fight the Spanish Armada. I’d like to know her state of mind.

The piece of wisdom you would pass on to a child...Pick your battles. 

The unlikely interest that engages your curiosity...Clay pigeon shooting. I’m actually a pretty decent shot.

The treasured item you lost and wish you could have again...A certificate I was given by the ambulance service in New Zealand (where we moved when I was 19) in 1982 when my father, Brian, had a heart attack in our sitting room and I brought him back to life with CPR. I lost it that night. 

The unending quest that drives you on...To visit the next new place on my list of 100 that I want to see. 

The poem that touches your soul...A Shropshire Lad by AE Housman. I love its sense of missing home.  

The misapprehension about yourself you wish you could erase...People expect me to smile all the time. But if I went around grinning the whole time people would think I was mad!

The event that altered the course of your life and character...The night I saved my dad. I was only 20 and I had to suddenly grow up. Seeing the fine line between life and death was terrifying and truly shocking but the CPR gave him an extra 25 years. 

The crime you would commit knowing you could get away with it...I’d break into Buckingham Palace or Windsor Castle and have a rummage through all the secret archives and diaries.  

The song that means most to you...Make Me Smile by Steve Harley And  Cockney Rebel reminds me of summers in Newquay when I was a teenager. I felt free and was having the time of my life.

The happiest moment you will cherish forever...When I got a standing ovation at the end of the first night of Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat in 1993. I could have made such an idiot of myself, but it worked. 

The saddest time that shook your world...When my dad died at 5.50pm on 1 May 2008. I couldn’t save him that time. He was 72 and had a terrible demise from heart failure – he deserved better. I don’t think I have totally dealt with it. He was a decent, honest man, with a great sense of humour, and I miss him so much.

The unfulfilled ambition that continues to haunt you...I’d love to orbit the world in the International Space Station. I have an App on my phone that tells me when it’s going over me.

The philosophy that underpins your life...Be brave, take risks, but listen to alarm bells and trust your instincts.

The order of service at your funeral...I’ll probably come in to The Lark Ascending by Vaughan Williams and go out to Make Me Smile. There’s a load of wine for a wake, but I don’t want it all drunk because there’s a pension in my cellars for Steph!

The way you want to be remembered...Fondly. And as a trusted friend who was generous with his time.

The Plug...Phillip will be part of ITV1’s coverage of the Jubilee on 5 June.