Alison Hammond found slavery TV series so ‘upsetting’ she didn’t want to watch

Alison Hammond is talking ten to the dozen when she stops suddenly and asks, ‘Are you getting this all down?’ Fortunately, we are recording the interview, as her enthusiasm is too much for our rusty shorthand.

She’s on a high right now because ITV commissioned a TV show that she came up with, which will be aired as part of Black History Month UK.

It’s a one-hour special called Alison Hammond: Back To School, that sees Alison touring the UK to find out about Black figures through the ages who have been left out of our history books.

‘I am so flattered that they turned my idea into a show,’ she gushes. ‘At school, I wasn’t interested in history, but one million per cent I would have chosen it as an option if the people on this show were part of the syllabus because I can relate to them.’

Alison was one of the stars of Celebrity Haunted Mansion

Alison only realised that Black people had been suppressed throughout history, when her family sat down to watch the TV mini-series Roots, about a family descended from Black slaves, which originally aired in 1977.

‘I didn’t want to see it, it was upsetting,’ she says. ‘My brother listened to a lot of Bob Marley and it was only when I reached adulthood that I understood the lyrics were about Black consciousness.

‘The video we all saw of George Floyd was so shocking that people are listening now. It absolutely breaks my heart that someone had to die for this documentary to be made.’

Alison Hammond with her late mum Maria
Alison with her mum Maria, who died earlier this year

Alison’s parents were both from Jamaica. Her mother Maria died in February this year and her biological father, who wasn’t part of her life, passed away a few months later.

The star was incredibly close to her mum, and lived nearby to her in Birmingham. ‘I lost my mum earlier this year to cancer and she is now laid to rest just around the corner.

‘It’s really important to me to still be close to her. I’ve just been here in Birmingham all my life. I see London as work, so it’s nice to get away from it and back home after work,’ she says.

A shot of Alison Hammond when she was three which she shared on Instagram
A shot of Alison when she was three which she shared on Instagram

Jamaica plays an important part in her identity as well. ‘I’ve been to Jamaica seven times in my lifetime and I absolutely love it. I love the food, people and music. If you have never been, I urge you to go and get on that lovely beach,’ she says.

Alison’s mother taught her about Black history by taking her to see a play about it when she was 14, but for Alison’s own son Aidan, whose father is from North Africa, things are very different.

‘It’s the other way round. He educates me,’ she laughs. ‘With the internet and everything, the kids of today are on it. There is nothing that Aidan doesn’t know.’

He is 15 now and Alison is still very much a mum when she is not at work on This Morning , doing her hilarious interviews and charming the pants off everyone from Hugh Jackman to Harrison Ford and Ryan Gosling.

Presenter Alison Hammond with her son Aidan
Presenter Alison with her son Aidan

‘I spend a lot of time picking up towels and uniform, moving shoes and repeating myself over and over again. “Have you done your chores? Have you done your homework?”

‘All teenagers have their moments and I am so proud of him. He is just like the coolest, sweetest guy and he really makes me laugh. I can see he is going to make a really nice husband, he is just going to be lovely.’

Alison won’t be knitting or making jam once Aidan has left home – she has far bigger plans than that. ‘I want to conquer America,’ she confesses. ‘I haven’t conquered England yet, but when Aidan is grown up, I want to go out to the States and have my own show.’

It seems perfectly plausible now that she might just do that, whereas such high ambitions were unimaginable when Alison first appeared on our TV screens in series three of Big Brother back in 2002. She worked in a cinema at the time and had £4,000 worth of debt.

Alison Hammond on Big Brother in 2002
Alison’s TV career was launched by her 2002 stint on Big Brother

‘They said to me, “Alison, you can’t go back to work, you are too famous,” but I had only been in the show for two weeks before I got voted off. One million people actually took the time to pick up their phones to get rid of me, you know

‘It was harsh! What a blessing it was. I look back on that time with such fondness. I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for Big Brother .

And she still can’t quite believe her luck working on an award-winning ITV show. ‘It is such fun working with Holly and Phil on This Morning . It really is a genuine relationship we all have.

‘We’re not in each other’s homes as we all have our own lives, but before filming and between takes, we get all the gossip and have a little chat. It is like our TV home and we feel very comfortable with each other. It’s a nice feeling.’

How Alison Hammond spends her Sundays

Lie-in or up with the lark?

I do like a lie-in, but I don’t have one every week, because I like to get up early to go to the gym. It’s hard to find the time when you are filming, so I go on a Sunday.

Describe a typical Sunday…

It’s the day when I like to have a bit of pampering for myself. I usually wake up quite early and get in the jacuzzi with a cup of tea. Then I run to the gym and do Pilates or yoga.

If I miss the slot, I do 45 minutes on the cross trainer, followed by some weights. I cook lunch and then go and visit my mum’s grave, put some beautiful flowers there and make sure it looks really nice.

Sunday roast at home or pub lunch?

I prefer my own roast. Aidan always wants chicken, but I try not to eat too much meat so I will have the roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings plus veggies and gravy.

I do have a local pub called The Punch Bowl that will literally bring me a roast lunch in an hour if I phone them. Sometimes they call me and say ‘You haven’t rung’ and I say ‘I’m cooking my own lunch today!’

Sunday papers or Sunday telly?

I do love cookery shows. I love watching James Martin. My mum loved him and we’ve been to his house. I am also a Netflix person, but I have to be careful – sometimes I realise I’m sat there watching a piece of furniture. I’ve just watched Little Fires Everywhere on Prime, which I loved.

– Alison Hammond: back to school is on Tuesday, October 6 at 9pm on ITV


Checkout latest world news below links :
World News || Latest News || U.S. News

Help us to become independent in PANDEMIC COVID-19. Contribute to diligent Authors.

[charitable_donation_form campaign_id=57167]

Source link

Back to top button
SoundCloud To Mp3