Yorkshire, Ffion and a pint keep me stable, says Hague

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Yorkshire, HIS wife Ffion and a pint of ale. A fly-on-the wall-documentary about William Hague, to be screened tomorrow, shows these are some of his favourite things away from his hectic life as the Leader of the Opposition.

Yorkshire, HIS wife Ffion and a pint of ale. A fly-on-the wall-documentary about William Hague, to be screened tomorrow, shows these are some of his favourite things away from his hectic life as the Leader of the Opposition.

In an attempt to show the more human side of Mr Hague, the makers of the Channel 4 programme, Just William ... And Ffion, had unprecedented access to the couple over the past six months.

Mr Hague admits on camera that the public may think that he is a drunk in light of his boast that he used to drink 14 pints a day and had numerous rums on his 18th birthday. "I think I had 32 and everybody's gonna think I'm an alcoholic," he says.

Mr Hague also speaks publicly for the first time about the influence his wife Ffion has had on his political decisions, revealing that he would have declined the leadership of the Conservative Party if she had asked him to.

The programme, which was filmed in his private office, his parents' home in Rotherham and places in North Yorkshire, depicts a confident, if on occasions smug, down-to-earth Yorkshire bloke.

The family's public support is seen as an important part of Mr Hague's image and his sister Veronica Clinton, who usually lives in America and used to call him Tory pig, will attend next week's Conservative Party conference for the first time since he became leader.

He says: "I had a happy childhood. If you have three sisters you learn to answer back, and eat quickly. You can learn to look after yourself."

Mr Hague also tries to shed his "political anorak" image, which is reinforced every time the film of his speech to the Tory Party conference when he was 16 is replayed. "Politics is not the only thing in my life," he says. "I have lots of sources of stability in my life. If you have the wife I have and the family home that I have, I actually don't have any insecurities."

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