Fern Britton: ‘I didn’t expect to be 65 and single and really relaxed’

Fern Britton: ‘I Didn’t Expect To Be 65 And Single And Really Relaxed’
The former This Morning presenter opened up about her split with celebrity chef Phil Vickery. Photo: PA
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By Hannah Roberts, PA Entertainment Reporter

Fern Britton has said that she did not expect to feel “really relaxed” following her marriage ending after 20 years.

The 65-year-old former This Morning presenter has reflected on being single after she split from celebrity chef Phil Vickery.


Britton announced the break-up of her marriage to Vickery in January 2020, shortly after the death of her father, actor Tony Britton in December 2019.

Speaking to Good Housekeeping, Britton said: “My children are grown-up and I’m no longer married, and it’s as if this whole other world has opened up.

Fern Britton Good Housekeeping
Fern Britton opens up to Good Housekeeping about being single in her 60s (Good Housekeeping/David Venni/PA)


“I never thought this would happen; I didn’t expect to be 65 and single and really relaxed.”

Her and Vickery had appeared on the show Ready Steady Cook and tied the knot in 2000.

Announcing their break-up on Twitter she said the couple had decided to go their “separate ways.”

Talking about her health, Britton said that a switch had been flipped a year ago when she grew a desire to get fitter and healthier.


“About a year or so ago, I realised that I wasn’t looking after myself – physically or mentally,” she said.

“I wasn’t doing exercise, I was eating too much and suddenly, it was like I flipped a switch and I thought, ‘No, you’ve got to look after yourself’.

“So I started doing that, and it’s given me a new sort of energy.

“I do a bit of yoga and I’ve started doing the couch to 5k running app.


“I’m very slow, I’ve got arthritis in one of my knees and I’m about to have a shoulder replacement, but I just thought, ‘it’s only three miles, come on!’

Fern Britton for Good Housekeeping
Britton says she has “entered a new phase of life” (Good Housekeeping/David Venni/PA)

“I’m not intending to run a long marathon or beat anybody, but I do enjoy the fitness side of it.”


Britton is also known for presenting the ITV breakfast programme This Morning, which she left in 2009.

Discussing the possibility of making a return, she said: “I don’t think I’d be able to turn the clock back; it wouldn’t work that way.

“My time at This Morning was marvellous and I adored the 10 years I was there, but I feel you should never look back.”

Phillip Schofield, who co-presented This Morning with Britton from 2002 to 2009 and later with Holly Willoughby, left the show in May before admitting to an “unwise but not illegal” affair with a younger colleague and stepping down from ITV.

Britton has children – twins Jack and Harry and daughter Grace – from her first marriage to TV executive Clive Jones, and daughter Winnie with Vickery.

Since leaving This Morning, she has written novels – including historical fiction Daughters Of Cornwall (published in 2020) and 2022’s The Good Servant. She took part in the 2012 series of Strictly Come Dancing, partnering up with Artem Chigvintsev.

After splitting from Vickery, London-born Britton moved to Cornwall full time.

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