Chris Tarrant says he used to drink pints in the morning at the start of his TV career

‘This became the normal pattern for most of the next 10 years,’ presenter wrote in his new memoir

Ellie Harrison
Tuesday 19 April 2022 14:46
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Michael Sheen's Chris Tarrant impression leaves Graham Norton in stitches

Chris Tarrant has recalled the amount of alcohol he drank during the first decade of his TV career.

The former presenter of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? started his TV career on the current affairs programme ATV Today, which he presented from 1964 to 1981.

In his new memoir, It’s Not a Proper Job, Tarrant wrote: “On the day I began, I met a lovely guy called John Swallow. His idea of showing me the ropes was to go to The Crown pub.

“It was just after half 10 and my new boss was pouring pints down my neck.

“This became the normal pattern for most of the next 10 years. We would take what we always referred to as the ‘livener’, then start our day.”

He added: “We would almost certainly have a couple more at lunchtime and then there was the Green Room – open during transmission.”

Chris Tarrant on ‘Tiswas’

In the Seventies, while still working on ATV Today, Tarrant rose to prominence as a co-host on Tiswas, a children’s television show broadcast on Saturday mornings.

The subsequent years saw him presenting on Capital Radio and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?

In 2018, Tarrant pleaded guilty to drink-driving. He was fined £6,000 and given a 12-month road ban.

He said: “I made a mistake and I paid for it. I shouldn’t have driven. Full stop.”

It’s Not a Proper Job will be published on 25 April.

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