My Secret Life: Zoe Ball

TV & radio presenter

Zoe Ball was born on 23 November 1970 in Blackpool. She was the first woman to host the Radio 1 breakfast show and became a household name as a presenter of Channel 4's The Big Breakfast. She lives with her husband, the DJ Norman Cook (aka Fatboy Slim), and their son, Woody, in Hove, Sussex. She is touring with Strictly Come Dancing Live! until 19 February.

I drive...A BMW Chelsea tractor, which is quite embarrassing. And then there's our Citroë* DS from 1969, which our son Woody calls it the Frog. It comes out in the summer, our big green sun bus. And I ride a bicycle around town.

If I have time to myself...I get into bed and watch movies – it doesn't matter what.

You wouldn't know it but I'm very good at ... building Lego. I even built the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars the other day.

You may not know it but I'm no good at... maths. Everyone thinks that I'd be really good because my dad [the television presenter Johnny Ball] is a science man, but I'm terrible. And drinking – I used to be a right old one, but these days I just can't take it any more!

A book that changed me...anything by John Updike, particularly Your Lover Just Called.

Movie heaven...Harold and Maude, with its fabulous Cat Stevens soundtrack. Or The Jerk. Or Arthur – Norm and I know it by heart; I play John Gielgud and he's Dudley Moore and Liza Minnelli.

Comfort eating...soup with cut up cheese in it. Then there's the Norm board, which he brings me in bed – crisps, pickle and cheese.

When I was a child...I wanted to be Fanny Brice, as played by Barbra Streisand in Funny Girl – she was quirky-looking and funny, rather than beautiful and vacuous.

All my money goes on...holidays and Lego. And shoes and bags and jackets. And pyjamas.

My favourite building...is the Pantheon in Rome, where we recently went for a romantic weekend. You kind of feel like if you squint and everyone disappears, you're in the heart of the Roman Empire.

It's not fashionable but I like...pyjamas. A lot.

If I wasn't me I'd like to be...Alexa Chung. I love her and her boyfriend so much. I met her briefly in New York recently and she's wicked.

The shop I can't walk past...Tribeca [a clothes shop] in Brighton.

My favourite work of art...one of the Rothkos at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.The soundtrack to my life ... a lot of new folk, like Ben Kweller, Fionn Regan and Laura Marling. Recently Radiohead and the Arctic Monkeys too.

The best invention ever...is the iPod, as I do lots of travelling and need music in my life the whole time. If I'm without it, I might as well have lost a limb.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Ashdown Group: Human Resources Manager

£28000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: A successful organisation...

Recruitment Genius: Internal Recruiter - Manufacturing

£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Internal Recruiter (manufact...

Ashdown Group: HR Manager (CIPD) - Barking / East Ham - £50-55K

£50000 - £55000 per annum + 25 days holidays & benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Man...

Recruitment Genius: Operations / Project Manager

£40000 - £48000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This software company specialis...

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones