Scot­land’s Trail­blaz­ers

The women break­ing down bar­ri­ers

No. 1 Magazine - - CONTENTS -

The Tele­vi­sion Su­per­star

Queen of Break­fast Tele­vi­sion and proud Scot, Lor­raine Kelly has ex­celled in her 32-year TV ca­reer – while be­ing mum to Rosie – af­ter start­ing out in the male­dom­i­nated news­pa­per in­dus­try in the 1980s. I don’t think any­one can have it all, but that’s not nec­es­sar­ily a bad thing. No­body is Su­per­woman; we’re all just gud­dling along try­ing our best. As for hav­ing it all, I think that has be­come some­thing peo­ple aspire to, but I don’t re­ally think peo­ple can have it all, it would be re­ally very hard. That said, I do think motherhood and ca­reer can run side-by-side. And I think I am a bet­ter mother be­cause I had a ca­reer (but that’s not to say some­one stay­ing at home is a bet­ter or worse mother). It’s very pa­tro­n­is­ing when peo­ple say ‘You’re just a stay-at-home mother’ be­cause that’s the most im­por­tant job you do. A lot of women would love to stay at home and look af­ter their chil­dren, but they can’t be­cause they have to have two wages com­ing in. Whether you are a work­ing mum or a stay-ath­ome mum, you are still an equally-val­ued, hard­work­ing mum. I was re­ally lucky be­cause my hus­band Steve, a free­lance cam­era­man, and I shared the child­care. We also had Helen, a lovely girl who came to the house if I was leav­ing at 4.30am and Steve was work­ing away. She was an ab­so­lute gem. I was lucky enough to be able to af­ford that, not ev­ery­body can. Your child is your pri­or­ity, of course they are, and that has al­ways been the case for me too. I was pre­sent­ing GMTV with Ea­monn [Holmes] when I went off on ma­ter­nity leave to have Rosie. They hired Anthea [Turner] and asked me to come back to do a mother and baby slot that Oc­to­ber when Rosie was tiny (she was born in June). It went so well they said ‘We should just give you your own show’, and in the Jan­uary of the fol­low­ing year they did – so I only re­ally got my own show be­cause of Rosie! And that was 22 years ago. I have al­ways been quite lucky. When Rosie was lit­tle, ev­ery­thing else fit­ted in around her. So I would write my col­umn at mid­night, leave meet­ings early, and go home on the train, sweat­ing, hop­ing I would make the school play! To women re­turn­ing to work af­ter ma­ter­nity leave, I would ad­vise: don’t beat your­self up and don’t try to be per­fect. What I did was com­part­men­talise ev­ery­thing. When you are at work, you’re at work, but when you are with your kids, it’s their time. There are lit­tle pock­ets of en­light­en­ment around the coun­try where firms have in­tro­duced crèches, flexi-hours, and job shar­ing – we ab­so­lutely need to have more of that. If firms did give women the chance to do flexi-time, or job share, then they will get so much more out of their work­force. It makes per­fect sense. I do think that we have got bet­ter, but I be­lieve that a lot of com­pa­nies could do much, much more. Nurs­eries are re­ally ex­pen­sive and that’s where em­ploy­ers and the govern­ment could do so much more. At ITV, we do a lot of

‘Pay is re­ally im­por­tant – if you are do­ing the same job (as a man) you ab­so­lutely should be earn­ing the same money.’

flexi-time be­cause half of the peo­ple who work on my show are par­ents. Pay is re­ally im­por­tant – if you are do­ing the same job [as a man], you ab­so­lutely should be earn­ing the same money. It doesn’t mat­ter where you work, it’s just not ac­cept­able. It’s all com­ing from the top, but peo­ple’s at­ti­tudes are chang­ing. Grad­u­ally it is hap­pen­ing. When I started in news­pa­pers I knew sex­ism ex­isted but I never ex­pe­ri­enced it. I went straight from school to be­ing a cub re­porter at the East Kil­bride News, then the BBC as a re­searcher, then TV: AM as a re­porter, cov­er­ing the whole of Scot­land. There was only me (and my crew) so I did ev­ery­thing, there was no­body say­ing ‘you can’t do the sport sto­ries, or the po­lit­i­cal sto­ries’, but I also made the ba­con rolls for the guests in the morn­ing! It was crazy, but it was the best ex­pe­ri­ence ever. The only time [I ex­pe­ri­enced sex­ism] was when I was sports re­port­ing be­cause a lot of the ‘old school’ [foot­ball] man­agers thought ‘She’s a girl, she doesn’t know any­thing’. Be­cause they were on the back foot, they ended up telling me ev­ery­thing – it was fan­tas­tic! Look at Scot­land, how fan­tas­tic is it that our three main po­lit­i­cal par­ties are all lead by women? It’s amaz­ing! Look at Ni­cola [Stur­geon], Kezia [Dug­dale] and Ruth [David­son] – three strong, pow­er­ful women at the top of their game. I don’t think we could have bet­ter role mod­els than them, re­gard­less of your po­lit­i­cal views (be­cause I am apo­lit­i­cal). Ob­vi­ously one day the job will have to end – I have been do­ing it for 32 years. I am so lucky, I live down here [in Lon­don] dur­ing the week and I go home to Scot­land ev­ery week­end. I love com­ing home: it’s where my hus­band is, my friends are, and where I feel to­tally my­self. Look­ing to the future, I would love to write a novel be­cause I am a news­pa­per­woman at heart, I love writ­ing and I have got lots of ideas. If that hap­pens, it would be amaz­ing. But to be hon­est, I am very happy do­ing what I am do­ing for the fore­see­able future be­cause it is good fun. My ad­vice to you is: you’re do­ing all right, but we can al­ways do bet­ter, cer­tainly as far as rights for women, but look how far we have come. As long as you put your chil­dren first, and they know that they are loved, that’s the main thing.

Dress, Lor­raine for JD Wil­liams, £55

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