Belfast Telegraph

Calum Best 'has no plans' for Ulster trip on book signing visit to Ireland

By Rebecca Black

Calum Best has spoken of his love for Belfast - but has not indicated that he will visit this weekend when he is in Ireland for a book signing.

The son of legendary footballer George Best also insisted "my dad was my hero too" as he again defended his decision to write a book about his relationship with his late father.

Best recently penned a memoir entitled Second Best: My Dad and Me, in which he discussed his father's problems with alcohol.

However, his aunt Barbara McNarry has said that her brother would have felt "a great sense of betrayal" at what she called the nastiness of Calum's words in his book.

The 34-year-old took to the airwaves on Radio Ulster's Talkback yesterday to explain his book.

He insisted it wasn't meant to put his dad down.

"If you read the whole thing it just tells you what we went through," he said.

Best conceded there were "some nasty bits in it", but added: "That is what happens with having an alcohol-dependent person".

He went on to say he will take nothing away from "George Best the legend", and said: "I love the Belfast people.

"Some of them respect what I'm doing, others that don't - I understand that.

"George Best is their idol, their hero and he's mine as well.

"It's sometimes hard to hear stories that take that kind of level away and make a person human."

He offered no explanation as to why he had no plans to come to Belfast this weekend.

Best will be in Dublin tomorrow taking part in a book signing session at Dubray Books.

He has not announced any plans to come north to Belfast.

Speaking on ITV's Lorraine earlier yesterday, Best explained his book as "the journey of a father and a son that had alcohol dependency throughout their whole relationship".

"My life is very blessed in being my dad's son and I'm proud of the legacy and I will run with that and shout it from the rooftops but this book was a situation for me, as a 34-year-old man now more confident and comfortable in myself than I've ever been, to be able to tell my story of what it was like not having George Best the footballing icon, who I'm very proud of and always will be, to having dad [who] was an alcohol-dependent," he said.

George Best died in 2005, aged 59. Calum appeared on Celebrity Big Brother earlier this year.

He has been dating former Made in Chelsea star and model Ianthe Rose Cochrane-Stack (23) since late last year. Best said she was the first girlfriend he has introduced to his mum Angie.

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