I have my eye on a cou­ple of pieces from Paul’s new col­lec­tion

Louise Duffy is lov­ing life with foot­ball leg­end Paul Galvin and shares his love of clothes, but in­sists that she is far bet­ter in the kitchen

Irish Daily Mail - - In­ter­view - BY EOIN MUR­PHY En­ter­tain­ment Edi­tor

I sound like or­phan An­nie but I was talk­ing about traf­fic on AA Road Watch. I’ve had help

THE dim light­ing flick­ers off the chan­de­liers and can­de­labra at No. 22 on South Anne Street; a be­spoke venue for hire a minute’s walk from the bus­tle of Grafton Street. A great hall has been erected from what was once McGona­gles and The Crys­tal Ball­room, and what has been raised in its place is a plush open space com­plete with a glit­ter ball and vel­vet drapes.

Next month this great hall will host a gath­er­ing of food­ies, blog­gers and hungry take­away pa­trons. So out­side in the Li­brary bar a queue of jour­nal­ists has formed, ea­ger to in­ter­view the com­pere, To­day FM DJ and one half of the most stylish pair­ing on the show­biz scene, Louise Duffy. The Mayo pre­sen­ter will co-host the now an­nual Just Eat Na­tional Take­away Awards with comic Colm O’Regan.

And, wear­ing a full-length crim­son ball gown, she has al­ready brought a lift to the pro­ceed­ings.

‘I am be­hav­ing my­self, I am look­ing for­ward to the Just Eat awards. It is go­ing to be a lovely event – and I get to work with the bold Colm Regan so it should be a lot of fun.

‘To a de­gree, it can be nerve-wrack­ing enough, be­cause when you are in your lit­tle stu­dio and the house is empty from seven to nine each evening it is very re­laxed, but when all those faces are look­ing back at you there are the ini­tial in­takes of breath and wows. All these faces are look­ing up at you. But, bar the ini­tial set-up, I am fine af­ter­wards and I set­tle in af­ter it.’

Fresh from a break, she is back on the air­waves in her 7pm, two-hour slot and is quite happy be­ing one of the few fe­male pre­sen­ters on the na­tional air­waves.

She has quite openly said that it can’t be de­nied that there is a pre­dom­i­nantly male line-up on the sta­tion’s day­time sched­ule. But she is ex­tremely proud to rep­re­sent her gen­der on the air­waves and be­lieves that To­day FM is do­ing more than enough to equal up the gen­der im­bal­ance.

‘Of course I would like to see more women on the air­waves. I know it is a very preva­lent con­ver­sa­tion and that it needs to be had and there is a lot of fo­cus on it. And yes there is an ab­so­lute im­bal­ance and you can’t ar­gue against that. I can only talk about my ex­pe­ri­ence and where I come from, and To­day FM have been very sup­port­ive of me and pushed me to do things that I might not have had the op­por­tu­nity to do so I can only speak about my jour­ney.

‘They don’t hire be­cause of gen­der which is good in one way, in that they get the right per­son for the job. But it also can con­ver­sa­tion.

‘How­ever, top and tail in To­day FM you have Paula McSweeney and Me. And Muire­ann O’Con­nell is con­stantly on-air and she is bril­liant and she fills in for AL and Der­mot and Dave so there are a lot of voices.

‘But be­hind the scenes on the news and many of the pro­duc­ers are re­ally strong women as well. And when you are in there it doesn’t feel like there is a lack of fe­male voices but I can see how the con­ver­sa­tion ex­ists.’

Louise says that through­out her ca­reer she has only been sup­ported by her male coun­ter­parts in­clud­ing the late Tony Fen­ton who was some­thing of a men­tor for her.

‘I truly am re­ally proud about be­ing a fe­male DJ on To­day FM. I think that it is a tes­ta­ment to To­day FM that they took me in when I had very lit­tle ex­pe­ri­ence.

‘I know I am start­ing to sound like the or­phan An­nie, but I was just talk­ing about traf­fic a cou­ple of min­utes a day on the AA Road Watch slot and they have taught me so much. And peo­ple like Ian Dempsey and Der­mot and Dave add to this have all been so good to me. As well as Tony Fen­ton back in the day. So I would have learned so much from the guys that are there. I also have worked hard and I am ex­tremely proud of that.’

An­other area of pride for her is Mayo’s tri­umph over Kerry and their place in to­mor­row’s All-Ire­land foot­ball fi­nal. She laughs off sug­ges­tions of any mar­i­tal rift af­ter her hus­band Paul Galvin’s team were dumped out of the com­pe­ti­tion. In fact she con­fesses to be­ing some­thing of a fraud when it comes to the GAA, al­though she be­lieves ev­ery­one out­side of Dublin will be shout­ing for Mayo.

‘Mayo ver­sus Kerry, we are, of course, still speak­ing and, fun­nily enough, we had a re­ally nice day.

‘All my broth­ers and my dad and aun­ties and un­cles were up, as well as Paul’s fam­ily, so we had a lot of fun. I don’t take it too se­ri­ously and I can just go and en­joy the day. If Mayo do it I think Paul and the en­tire coun­try would be very happy for them and I would be happy for them. It is high time they did it and you would have to cheer them on. Maybe bar Dublin.

‘It is al­ways very funny be­cause I al­ways feel like a bit of a fraud hav­ing a con­ver­sa­tion about foot­ball as it is re­ally not my forte at all. In Mayo peo­ple are so pas­sion­ate about it and the sup­port­ers are tire­less, year in and year out, and they de­serve some­thing.’

The pre­sen­ter pre­vi­ously fronted The Louise Duffy Show at 2:30pm on To­day FM but a year ago moved to the later slot of 7pm, swap­ping places with Fer­gal D’Arcy.

‘I am a year long on ra­dio; it was my year’s an­niver­sary last week so it is a great for me. Ob­vi­ously, when you move from dif­fer­ent shows in the sched­ule your life changes as you go. I was on in the morn­ings back in the day and that change was com­plete up­heaval.

But this has been easy and I have just set­tled into it and it gives me a lot more time dur­ing the day to do other bits and pieces like this and the show it­self suits me re­ally well.

‘It is en­tirely about mu­sic and that is the only con­tent I need to worry about. We can ex­per­i­ment a lot more and have a lot of fun with the playlist yet it is still fa­mil­iar for the To­day FM lis­tener.

THERE is a lot of new mu­sic and Ir­ish mu­sic. And on Tues­days I will ded­i­cate an en­tire hour to the best of Ir­ish mu­sic so that might be new acts or old classics like the Frames and U2. It is a re­ally nice mix but it means that I am be­ing cre­ative ev­ery day and I am set­tled in fi­nally.’

She also launched her own fash­ion web­site and, of course, tied the knot to the fa­mous footballer and fash­ion de­signer, who has just launched a new Peaky Blin­ders line of clothes in Dunnes Stores. De­spite all the life-chang­ing events that have hap­pened over the past two years she says that mar­ried life re­ally suits them as a cou­ple.

‘Mar­ried life is good, so far so good. We have set­tled into this old

We have set­tled into this old mar­ried-cou­ple life now and it is great

mar­ried cou­ple life now and it is great. Paul is re­ally busy and thank­fully I am too. The Peaky Blin­ders style is amaz­ing. We were glued to it and the fash­ion is phe­nom­e­nal and Paul is a big fan of Cil­lian Mur­phy and he also is very con­scious of hav­ing a story be­hind each col­lec­tion, and I think that kind of adds to a lit­tle bit of it. But this cur­rent col­lec­tion I am most ex­cited about be­cause there are a cou­ple of pieces I have my eye on. There is a lovely stripey knit and a mil­i­tary jacket that I will be in­sist­ing comes home in a smaller size. I feel that it is get­ting bet­ter all the time and that he is very proud of it.

‘It is ac­ces­si­ble and I think that Ir­ish­men are ex­per­i­ment­ing a lot more now in terms of fash­ion, and so it is re­ally cool.’

As a front for Just Eat, Louise is al­most con­trac­tu­ally obliged to ad­mit to or­der­ing in a lot.

She does how­ever claim to be the cook in her house­hold and puts all her en­er­gies into cook­ing stand-out break­fasts now that she is on air late at nights.

‘I love the awards and I love a bit of Sabba To Go, and I ac­tu­ally rely on take­aways a lot now be­cause at nine o’clock when you are com­ing home from work, who could be both­ered com­ing home from work and tack­ling that?

‘I rely on Sabba To Go a bit too much I think, but I am the cook in our house apart from that. I think Paul thinks he is but, no, I have def­i­nitely a lot more prow­ess in the kitchen than poor Paul.

‘I have to say I do a good steak and I do it with the works. I do the crispy onions and mush­rooms and the sauces from scratch.

‘But now, be­cause I work late, I am more of a break­fast per­son,’ she added.

‘I go all out for brekkie and I am a big girl for avo­cado smash and poached eggs and gen­eral hip­ster food, I am a gob­shite re­ally.

‘I rely on that a lot more and get more cre­ative re­ally at nine in the morn­ing in­stead of nine at night.’

The Just Eat Na­tional Take­away Awards 2017 will take place on Oc­to­ber 17.

Vot­ing is open for all take­away restau­rants through­out Ire­land. Vot­ing is on­line at www.just-eat. ie/take­awayawards2017 un­til Septem­ber 25.

Power cou­ple: Paul Galvin and Louise Duffy

Dressed for suc­cess: Louise Duffy

Ra­dio star: Louise Duffy has come a long way in her ca­reer so far

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