Belfast Telegraph

No wonder Amanda’s wary

By Gail Walker

So, Frank Holden is desperate for a reconciliation with TV star daughter Amanda, but says he knows that the interview he gave to a paper will wreck any slim chance there is of that.

Run that by me again. Longed for reunion? Big risk to talk publicly? Man talks to reporter? First class, Frank. Of course, it’s the same old sob story. Regrets? He’s had a few but then again not too few to mention ...

In short, Frank Holden split from his wife when Amanda was four and her sister, three. By his own admission, Mrs Holden had grown weary of her Navy husband away, away for months drinking and womanising.

After the marriage ended, Frank asked to be drafted 150 miles from the family home, paid £110 a month maintenance, but thoughtfully turned down weekly access so his girls wouldn’t see the “acid” relations between him and his ex-wife.

As for Amanda? She’s behaved impeccably. On the two occasions her dad asked to meet, she agreed and was friendly. After the birth of her daughter she made contact so he could meet his grandchild.

So, just what is £20,000 a year ferryman Frank’s problem with his wealthy, successful and famous daughter? It’s the usual blah, blah, blah. He knows it’s all his fault, he understands why she calls her stepdad ‘Dad’, but he’s always loved her and would like to get to know her properly.

In other words, Frank’s been a lousy dad but thinks that if he does enough of the old mea culpa then bygones can be bygones.

Frank, this may come as some surprise to you, but I suspect Amanda feels she already knows her father very well indeed.

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