Belfast Telegraph

How it's still Gloria in excelsis for this trouper

By Gail Walker

She was named after that legend of the Hollywood silent era, Gloria Swanson, and she is proving to be just as much of a trouper.

How it did the heart good to see our own Gloria Hunniford, at 71, turned out in an on-trend red and black outfit, her hair as honey blonde as ever and in full make-up, broadcasting on daytime TV from the Dale Farm site, where she'd been from 6.30am.

You always get the odd goon having a dig at Gloria, sniping that she talked too much about the death of her beloved daughter, Caron. Actually, if someone is dealt that sort of loss, they can talk about it all they want as far as I'm concerned. You don't have to buy the books. You can switch off the telly. And the point is, she carried on, no matter how brutally tough it was.

On these dark, wet mornings when you can barely haul yourself out of bed, one is suddenly reminded what a fabulous creation - and example - Gloria is. She is showbusiness to the core - the very word runs through her like 'Portrush' through a stick of rock. I've interviewed her many times and she has never disappointed, always ready to deliver a new line, a different angle. She has an intimate understanding of how newspapers and celebrity works.

Gloria may no longer be on primetime TV, but she's philosophical about that, once telling me those gigs don't last forever and you go where the work is.

And now she's a much-loved and vital part of daytime TV.

Ah Gloria, as your famous namesake once said: "I'm still big, it was the pictures that got small."


From Belfast Telegraph