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Friday People with broadcaster Sarah Travers

By Kerry McKittrick

The 40-year-old presents The Magazine show on UTV and lives in Portstewart with her husband, Stephen Price, and their children Jack (17) and Evie (11)

My husband, Stephen

Stephen and I met at Radio Foyle in 1995 – it was the first proper big job I ever had, a show called The Sounds Of Summer, and he was the producer.

He left the BBC a couple of years later and then worked in radio in Dublin. Over the last 10 years he's been running media courses at the Northern Regional College.

He keeps me very grounded and we're a good team. He's worked in the industry, too, so he's a great sounding board for me.

My children, Jack and Evie

I had Jack just before my 23rd birthday and he's just started driving. When Evie starts first form next year he'll be in upper sixth, so I'll have one at either end of the school range.

A lot of my friends have young children now or are just starting their families and I feel that I can relax with my two a bit now. I can do a bit more, too, than I couldn't do when I was a younger mum, so it's all worked outwell for us. Mind you, the kids don't think of me as a young mum, just mum!

My best friend

I have lots of friends but there are four from different stages in my life that I'm particularly close to. Mary Nelms and I met when we were three, as our gardens were very close together and our mums got chatting. We went to primary school, secondary school and even university together. She lives in Glasgow now.

Simone Mitchell and I met at Dominican College in Portstewart and she is the most fun person to be around. She has four kids and so much energy – she lights up a room when she walks in. She lives in a Scottish village which is called Anstruther and we were both young mums at the same time.

When I went to university at Nottingham Trent, I met Heidi Tomlinson on day one of our broadcast journalism course and we both hit it off straight away – she now works for the BBC in England. Finally, I met Tare Mills when I joined the BBC years ago. There were a group of us who all joined at the same time but I'm very close to her and we're still great pals, even though I've left the BBC.

My parents, Mary and Ian

My mum is from Cork and worked as a secretary – in those days, though, you had to give up your job when you were married. She would help out my dad who worked as a commercial salesman when she wasn't being a stay-at-home mum.

I also have a sister, Jennifer, who is a consultant haematologist and lives in Scotland. We are a close family and although my dad wouldn't have been of the generation to tell me he was proud of me every day, I knew he was. Dad passed away last year. He was always interested in the technical side of things and I think he might have wanted to be a cameraman because he was so interested in them.

Who I go to for advice

For general advice I go to Stephen, my mum or Tare. Mum's great for advice about kids and Stephen and Tare are both great for career advice, particularly as we've all worked in the same industry.

My mentor

When I started at the BBC there was a real culture of older journalists nurturing younger ones, so people like Noel Thompson, Donna Traynor and news editor Angelina Fusco were encouraging and great mentors.

My secret crush is ... Bryan Adams

It's a bit embarrassing, I know, but it goes back to that song of his that was on the Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves soundtrack. I played it over and over until my friends were ready to throw me out. He has a lovely, gravelly voice and really knows how to play the guitar.

My fantasy dinner party

Dolly Parton would be my first choice, as I got to interview her by video link on The Magazine last year and she's so funny. I love fun people.

Then, I'd ask Graham Norton as he would really keep the conversation going around the table.

I'd also ask Michael Palin, as he would have so many stories about travelling and also his time with Monty Python.

Finally, I'd ask Hillary Clinton – I think after a couple of glasses of wine she would be good company at the dinner table.

  • Sarah Travers will be hosting The Magazine Summer Special on UTV next Tuesday, July 29, at 8pm, a special one-hour show featuring the Celtic Tenors and Celebrity Masterchef judge John Torode

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