Belfast Telegraph

Home Life Weekend

Victoria Mary Clarke wearing one of the scarves from her new collection, at her home in Ballsbridge

Victoria Mary Clarke tells how jealousy of partner Shane Magowan stopped her marrying him for three decades until she found her own success designing angel scarves 

Your wedding is supposed to be the happiest day of your life. I wouldn't be the type of person to believe that. I don't expect things to turn out well, in general. When people ask me if I am excited about going on holiday, I say no, I hate flying and it might rain. So when me and Shane got married a year ago, I was really just hoping to get it over with and go home and watch Netflix.

Dame Maggie Smith with her award at the 65th Evening Standard Theatre Awards

Dame Maggie Smith: I am deeply grateful for the work in Harry Potter and Downton Abbey but it wasn't what you'd call satisfying. I didn't feel I was acting in those things 

Most categories in this year's Evening Standard Theatre Awards were hotly debated by the judges, but one had a clear winner from the start. At 84, Dame Maggie Smith was a shoo-in for the Natasha Richardson Award for Best Actress, in partnership with Christian Louboutin, for her performance in Christopher Hampton's A German Life at the Bridge Theatre.

Ben Richards

Actor Ben Richards on surviving bowel cancer, his 'miracle' daughter, starring in panto with May McFettridge and why he'd love a turn on the Strictly dancefloor 

He's one of the most familiar faces on TV, with starring roles in telly favourites from The Bill and Holby City to Hollyoaks and Footballers Wives. And now Ben Richards is right here in Belfast, bracing himself for a long stint front and centre of this year's iconic Grand Opera House panto, Beauty and the Beast, which runs until January 12.

Trinny Woodall has enjoyed great success with her Trinny London cosmetics range which was launched in 2017

Trinny Woodall: 'I am not a bossy person, but I will never sugar-coat' 

Reflecting on the time almost 10 years ago when TV work with her sidekick Susannah Constantine switched from a flood to a trickle, Trinny Woodall asks: "And who would employ me?" She goes on: "You know, I could get a consulting for a clothing firm, but what else? It's really tricky, and people say, 'Oh but you've done so much, you can do stuff', but it is tricky to get a job when you kind of dug yourself into a rather unique hole."

Aisling Franciosi

The Fall star Aisling Franciosi: 'They were really, really hard scenes... you never see skin or two bodies, it's all about the emotional destruction' 

All hell broke loose when Aisling Franciosi's latest film was screened at the Sydney Film Festival. Written and directed by Jennifer Kent, The Nightingale is set in Tasmania in the early 1800s and stars Franciosi as Clare Carroll, an Irish convict whose good looks have attracted the malign attention of a British Army lieutenant called Hawkins, played by Sam Claflin.

Angelina Jolie with her children at a premiere. From left, Maddox, Pax, Vivienne, Knox and Shiloh

Angelina Jolie says the message from her new film Maleficent: Mistress of Evil is about having the world accept you for who you are 

There is famous and there is Famous. Even well-known actors are not well-known to everyone: you always have to explain to someone who the person is and why they might know them. That's famous. Angelina Jolie, however, is Famous. Everyone knows Angelina: first name suffices, no one needs an explanation. Actor, director, activist, mother and lover, she has covered a lot in her 44 years.

Author Cathy Kelly outside her arts and crafts-style dormer bungalow in Wicklow

Bestselling Belfast-born author Cathy Kelly gives an insight into her fascinating life 

Aspiring writers are usually advised to write about what they know, and most successful ones usually do start off on that basis. What happens, though, when you're on your 20th novel, as is the case with successful popular-fiction author Cathy Kelly? Cathy's background is in journalism and the main character in her first novel, Woman to Woman, was a journalist, but one can't keep rehashing the same scenario.

Mariella Frostrup

'For a long time I thought the world was terrible and I didn't want to bring children into it' 

Mariella Frostrup - well known for her husky voice and campaigning spirit - has won recognition in a wide variety of roles. As a TV presenter she's fronted the likes of The Little Picture Show and Frostrup On Sunday back in the Nineties, more recently Mariella's Book Show and last year's hard-hitting documentary The Truth About the Menopause, while in April she hosted BBC One's Celebrity Painting Challenge.

Kerry McLean with her husband Ralph and their children, Tara, Dan and Eve

We may fear changes in our homes, careers or families but I’ve learnt it’s best to embrace it 

Change is something lots of us aren't great with, me included. One of my mother's favourite stories is when she found me, on the morning of my 10th birthday, bawling my eyes out. When she asked what was wrong, I explained that I didn't want to go into double digits, I was happy being nine and didn't want to get any older. I'd need to check the Guinness Book of Records, but this may just be the earliest reported case of a mid-life crisis.

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