TIP­PING POINT! TV quiz show win­ner in­spired to lose 5st af­ter be­ing stuck in pool


Sunderland Echo - - Front Page - By Kevin Clark kevin.clark@north­east-press.co.uk Twit­ter: @kevinclarkjp

Gran Carol Kelly says she is “the big­gest win­ner and the big­gest loser” af­ter scoop­ing £10,000 on na­tional TV – then shed­ding a third of her body weight fol­low­ing an em­bar­rass­ing hol­i­day mishap.

View­ers saw Carol, 63, hit the jack­pot on ITV game show Tip­ping Point on Fri­day – but since film­ing the show al­most a year ago, she has lost five-and-a-half stone ,hav­ing pre­vi­ously tipped the scales at more than 17 stone.

Carol was in­spired to sign up to the Slim­ming World group af­ter spend­ing three hours stuck in a Tener­ife swim­ming pool and is al­most un­recog­nis­able from the way she ap­peared on TV.

It was not long af­ter film­ing the show last year that dis­as­ter struck on a hol­i­day with hus­band Peter.

“Peter had gone for a walk and I jumped in the pool,” she said.

“I re­alised I could not get out of the pool – it did not have any walk-in steps, just ver­ti­cal ones, and I was too fat.

“There was a hoist, but when I spoke to the life­guard it was out of ac­tion. I pad­dled around for about three hours be­cause I just could not get out.

“Even­tu­ally some blokes round the pool asked if I was all right and I said I couldn’t get out so they lit­er­ally hauled me out.

“It was very em­bar­rass­ing, I just said ‘That’s it, it’s com­ing off.’ I was 17 stone, one-and-a-half pounds, and I am only five foot one.

“I walked through Het­ton Slim­ming World doors and it was the best thing I have ever done.”

That was in July last year. “I have lost five-anda-half stone ex­actly in eight months,” said Carol. “I feel fab­u­lous.” Look­ing back on her TV ap­pear­ance, Carol said she had the time of her life in the stu­dio.

“It was broad­cast on Fri­day, but it was orig­i­nally recorded on March 21 last year,” she said.

“I didn’t know it was go­ing to be that long – all they said was they would let me know when it was on, which they did.

“I knew it was for the new se­ries, so it would be on when­ever that started, but that was all I knew.”

“It was fab­u­lous. It re­ally was one of the best days I have ever had.

“I re­alised I could not get out of the pool – it had no walk-in steps” CAROL KELLY

“It was such fun and the peo­ple were lovely.

“Ben Shep­hard was first class and they made me feel re­ally wel­come.”

An­swer­ing the ques­tions was the easy bit, how­ever. The game is based on the tra­di­tional sea­side Penny Falls game and re­quires more than a touch of good for­tune.

“You don’t have to be a brain­box – the ques­tions were pretty easy,” said of­fice worker Carol.

“But you don’t just have to an­swer the ques­tions, it de­pends on how the ma­chine be­haves.

“Ben called me the ‘Tip­ping Point Jedi’ be­cause the ma­chine was just do­ing what­ever I wanted.”

Carol has been voted her slim­ming group’s Great­est Loser and Miss Slinky by fel­low mem­bers. Now, the gra­nof-four is look­ing for­ward to a new lease of life.

“I need a hip re­place­ment, but the doc­tors would not let me have the op­er­a­tion be­cause I was too heavy,” she said.

“Now I have been given a date for the op­er­a­tion.My life is go­ing to change even fur­ther for the bet­ter.”

Bro­nia Bowe, the leader of Slim­ming World’s Het­ton evening group, said: “Carol has been amaz­ing. She has such a won­der­ful, warm per­son­al­ity and had been an in­te­gral part of the group.

“I am hop­ing that af­ter she gets her hip re­place­ment, I can get her to be­come a con­sul­tant – she is just so won­der­ful and car­ing.”

A hol­i­day snap of Carol be­fore she lost weight.

Carol Kelly cel­e­brates her win with Tip­ping Point host Ben Shep­hard.

Carol Kelly, 63, once tipped the scales at more than 17 stone.

Carol be­fore she lost the weight.

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