Eamonn Holmes says hes romantic to wife Ruth every day: I inflate her tyres

Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford are easily one of our favourite TV couples, making us feel at home on This Morning when filling in for Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield. And the relationship we see on screen is real, as Eamonn tells us he loves the way Ruth looks and “the fact she’s so bossy” when we catch up for our interview.

The star – father to Declan, 32, Rebecca, 30, Niall, 28, and Jack, 19 – has been busy battling health issues and becoming a grandad, and is now hosting new BBC cooking contest Farm To Feast: Best Menu Wins. But he admits Ruth is the chef in their household.

Here, Eamonn, 61, talks keeping romance alive and serving guests takeaways…

Hi, Eamonn! How long has your love for Ruth been blooming now?

We’ve just celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary but we’ve been together 26 years.

And how have you kept happy domestic life from boiling over into hostility?

That’s a good question. I’m a very romantic sort of guy and I’ve never fallen out of love with her.

What’s the last romantic thing you did?

I’m romantic every day. It might be filling her car with petrol or inflating the tyres, or making changes to the mortgage agreement. Ruth is very capable, you see. She can hang pictures, cook, do the garden. She can do everything.

Inflating tyres doesn’t sound romantic…

You’ve got to understand what makes someone tick, understand your partner. And I understand when Ruth feels vulnerable or when she doesn’t. We know what our rules are.

Ruth is so independent; I mean, so independent, it’s very hard. She’s a tour de force but there’s no doubt she needs me for the odd thing still.

What do you love about Ruth the most?

I love the way she looks and that she’s so bossy.

You’re always laughing together on TV. What do you joke about off it?

Our business. It’s ridiculous, especially some of the people involved. That often makes us laugh. TV is the easiest thing anyone will ever do made difficult by people who either don’t understand it or want to seem important.

You became a grandad this year. How are you enjoying your new role?

I am now grandfather to Emelia, the daughter of my son Declan and his wife, Jenny. It’s been a delight to see how bonded Declan is.

Declan is my firstborn and I was very close to him, and when I met Emelia for the first time, I lifted her up and she cried straight away.

And how is your health? You’ve recently had Covid but you’ve had your fair share of issues in the past few years…

I’ve had 90 minutes of rehab for my back pain today, which I do all the time. It’s slow progress.

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What happened?

I dislocated two discs getting out of a low-slung car and I’ve been in a lot of pain this year. But at least the shingles from three years ago has cleared up. I know I’m not the only 61-year-old with health issues.

I had two hip replacements when I was 55 but I wish I’d got them sooner and I worry about being a poster boy for ailments. I was in the doctor’s yesterday getting an eye test and there was a woman beside me and we started talking and she was the same age.

We started comparing health notes and she’s had two new hips too, so it’s just age. We all go through these things. You’ve just got to make the most of life.

Definitely. You are fronting Farm To Feast – who wears the apron in your kitchen?

Here’s the thing. I’m one of five boys. My father’s long dead but my mother, the matriarch, who will be 93 this year, did everything for us and I’m not proud of that.

I can’t even tie my own shoelaces because my mother tied them for me.

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So is the kitchen a no-go zone for you?

Ruth has her little OCD ways and doesn’t want me bothering her in the kitchen.

So as you rarely venture into your kitchen, how come you’re hosting a cooking show?

Ruth said, “This show is perfect for you as you don’t have to cook and can just boss people about. You can give orders as to what you want.” I loved it and I’m friends with lots of the contestants now. They’ve all been round for dinner. Not cooked by me, obviously.

What would you serve guests?

It would be a takeaway, but don’t get me wrong, I have a huge appreciation of food. I can eat up, I can eat down and there are few things I don’t like. Perhaps cinnamon and dark chocolate.

Farm to Feast: Best Menu Wins is available on BBC iPlayer

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