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Zoe Ball and husband Norman Cook announce separation 'with great sadness'

Published 25/09/2016

Zoe Ball and Norman Cook are separating
Zoe Ball and Norman Cook are separating

Zoe Ball and her DJ husband Norman Cook - better known as Fatboy Slim - have announced their separation after 18 years together.

The pair said they remain "great friends", adding that they will continue to support each other and raise their two children together.

Ball and Cook, who wed in 1999, both posted a statement on their Twitter accounts saying: " With great sadness we are announcing that we have separated.

"After many exciting adventures together over the last 18 years we have come to the end of our rainbow."

The couple had endured a number of rocky patches in their relationship.

They split for a few months in 2003 after Ball had an affair with DJ Dan Peppe, and she was pictured in December having a drunken kiss with 22-year-old Tay Tay Starzh of boyband Franklin Lake.

But the 45-year-old insisted she and Cook had laughed off the slip-up, saying: "He has always said he wants his gravestone to read 'Norman was a very patient man'. And that sums it up really!"

After the picture emerged she told how they had a "good understanding of each other" and said the reasons they met and fell in love initially were still there.

The Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two host also spoke of the couple's future plans, saying they hoped to run a "pub, come post-office, come pet shop" when they retired.

Both were known for their hard partying ways.

Cook, who became one of the UK's leading DJs and producers, responsible for hits including Praise You, spoke about how the arrival of their second child felt like a gift after they both went sober.

Nelly was born in 2010, at which point the couple already had a nine-year-old son Woody.

Shortly after their daughter's birth Cook said: "Zoe and I both gave up drinking so this baby is a present of our sobriety. It was a tough start to the year but we're both much happier. It's all settled in at the Cooks' household."

The DJ, who will be performing a charity gig in London as part of the Oxjam festival next month, described himself and Ball as "a good tag team" in raising their children.

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