Belfast Telegraph

Home Life Weekend

Three young people lost their lives at the Co Tyrone venue

Kerry McLean: Since the St Patrick's Day tragedy that took three young lives, all parents of teenagers have been hugging them extra tightly 

I've been dreading the week ahead for such a long time. Many months ago my son, who's in the last year of primary school, came and asked me if he could go on a school trip to London. At the time I remember thinking that it would be great to give him something to look forward to, a light at the end of the horrible transfer test tunnel and a special experience to share with the people in his class before he and his mates head their separate ways in September when they start big school.

Rod Stewart

Rod Stewart in Belfast: 'I couldn't be more deeply happy than I am ... Penny is a great woman' 

Beneath his gravity-defying hairdo, Rod Stewart certainly wears his 74 years well, entering his hotel suite in skin-tight pinstripe trousers, silk scarf, dapper jacket and leopard-skin brothel-creeper shoes. He strides across the room like the ageless titan of blue-eyed soul that he is. Having sold over 100 million records, he has earned the right to strut. There is a football against the wall and I can't resist kicking it to Rod, who in turn kicks it back. Rod (who named his LA mansion Celtic House after his beloved Celtic Football Club) says he has a muscle injury in his knee - or he would have kicked the ball back harder.

Gary Barlow

Gary as you've never seen him before 

In Take That's heady heyday, Gary Barlow was always the adult of the band. He was the earnest one, a level-headed foil to Robbie Williams' maverick rock star persona. Now, as they celebrate their 30-year anniversary, he's more than grown into the role. Boy-band pin-ups often struggle with the transition to adulthood. But Barlow, who is 48, wears his 40s better than he did his 20s. Today, when I meet him in a plush sitting room deep inside the historic Abbey Road Studios in St John's Wood in London, he's pulling off double denim, and is even, if such a thing is possible, making it look distinguished.

Amy Huberman

Amy Huberman on moving home, why she loves being a shoe designer and her plans to write another bestseller 

Amy Huberman turns 40 later this month. If her productivity rate is anything to go by, the actress/author/TV series writer/businesswoman/shoe and jewellery designer and mother to two young children, Sadie (6) and Billy (4), will be an expert at finding time to mark the milestone with a birthday cake with hubby Brian O'Driscoll and their families, in between doing a thousand and one other things.

Emma Hannigan

Father of late author and cancer campaigner Emma Hannigan talks about her new book and his 'mission' 

Philip Hannigan says: "I would walk naked over O'Connell Bridge if it was going to help Emma, if it was going to sell the book," adding: "Fortunately no one has asked me." Philip is a businessman; his company sells precision tools for metal cutting and grinding. He is also the father of Emma Hannigan, bestselling Irish author of 13 novels who died a year ago this month, on March 3, after fighting cancer - fighting staunchly, publicly, and relentlessly, with words and humour and grit - over 11 years.

Gabby Bertin who is now in the House of Lords

From the day he left his daughter in a pub to the day he swore on radio... my life as David Cameron's press secretary 

For more than a decade Gabby Bertin was one of the powerful women by David Cameron's side, an invisible yet hugely influential figure around Westminster and Whitehall. When the former Prime Minister left his daughter in the pub, it was to his press secretary, Bertin, that he first confessed his mistake. When he accidentally swore on live radio, it was her disapproving tones of middle-class Croydon suburbia that upbraided him. And when the EU negotiations became fraught, she was at his side urging him on.

Eyal Booker is enjoying a varied career

Love Island’s Eyal Booker: 'I'm single but if you believed the media you'd think I was with a different girl every day' 

Eyal Booker has certainly been busy since he was voted off Love Island and got thrust into the world of celebrity - but love still eludes him. He had short-lived romances with Megan Barton-Hanson and Hayley Hughes on the hit ITV show, and although he got to the finale in E4's Celebs Go Dating last year, he's still single, and admits his fame means dating these days isn't easy.

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