It was more than five years ago, and I had only been in the role of disability policy adviser for a few weeks. I was…
Jay Blades emotionally recalls reading his daughter's letter
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Jay Blades, who is the star of The Repair Shop, has spoken out about his family life in an unearthed interview. The BBC presenter was previously married to his ex-wife, Jade, who he had met whilst studying Criminology at university as a mature student.
The 51-year-old detailed the breakdown of the couple’s marriage which resulted in the restorer being made homeless.
Ahead of his debut on the BBC’s The Repair Shop, Jay had been taking part in charity work but five years ago the couple had lost funding for their organisation.
In a candid interview, the on-screen star said that he walked out of the family and just “drove”.
The restorer expressed it was a difficult time for him and as a result, he ended up sleeping in his car.
“I left the family home, gave the house to my ex-wife and just drove. I didn’t know where I was going,” he told The Guardian in 2020.
“I didn’t even know if I would see tomorrow. It was a really, really dark time.”
Jay went on: “For years, I’d run community groups. I was the person people would come to when their children were arrested, something was going on at school, there were two gangs fighting: ‘Call Jay, he’ll sort it out.’
“I knew I needed support, but I couldn’t ask.
“I was scared because it would make me seem as if I was vulnerable, that I was not a ‘man’.”
Jay told how his pal Gerald then put him up for a fortnight before moving him in with his mother and step-father, where he stayed for a year and experienced “a second childhood”.
The BBC presenter was able to get back on his feet and not long later began to pursue his career in television.
He recently shared some exciting news as he announced his engagement to his girlfriend Lisa-Marie Bozen.
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Jay also revealed the ring was designed by his co-star Richard Talman.
Sharing a snap of Lisa-Marie’s stunning ring, Jay told fans: “Good afternoon all. Lunchtime Treat. It gives me great pleasure to announce that I got engaged to @lisamariezbozen.
“We wanted to share this news with you as we are very happy & hope to bring the same happiness your way. Ring designed by me & made by @rtfj.”
Jay and Lisa-Marie, who is the CEO of an on-demand exercise platform, were soon flooded with congratulatory messages from fans and celebrity pals.
Former BBC Breakfast host Louise Minchin wrote: “Ahh what lovely news congratulations”
Tamzin Outhwaite added: “Congratulations,” while Little Mix’s Leigh-Anne Pinnock commented: “Congrats jay!”
Jay’s engagement is his second following his marriage to ex-wife Jade, and the former couple share 15-year-old daughter Zola together, before splitting in 2015.
The Repair Shop airs tonight on BBC One at 8pm.
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