Sir Cliff Richard’s ‘idea of hell’ laid bare amid ‘ruthless’ relationship confession

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A number of revelations about the 80-year-old singer emerged this weekend after his appearance on the ITV show Piers Morgan’s Life Stories. Sir Cliff was branded “ruthless” by the Good Morning Britain star over the decision behind dumping lover Jackie Irving. He made the decision after his manager told him he could lose a third of his fans if the couple got married. Despite this, the Summer Holiday crooner made the surprising confession that being alone was his ultimate fear.

Sir Cliff’s love life has been under the microscope for decades, and he was known to have dated Irving and tennis ace Sue Barker before ending both relationships. 

While he claimed to have “seriously contemplated” asking the departing A Question of Sport star to marry him, he said he “didn’t love her quite enough” to commit the rest of his life to her.

The singer lived with Bill Latham until he moved out to live alone with his girlfriend and is now believed to share his numerous homes with Roman Catholic priest John McElynn. 

Sir Cliff told the Daily Mail in 2008: “’I don’t like living alone, so it’s nice if someone is there with me.

“I have never lived on my own and there’s always been someone with me, either fellow musicians or friends.”

He admitted that he didn’t like to travel, eat “or do anything alone” and much preferred friendly companionship.

Sir Cliff continued: “It would be my idea of hell to end up alone and living in an old people’s home. John shares my passion for tennis and is a great, great guy.

“He will always be able to work as a priest whenever he wants, but at the moment his job is to look after my properties abroad.”

The star admitted he was frustrated with the regular speculation over his relationship with companions – especially when they chose to live with him.

He said: “When Bill and I lived together, there were always stories about what people suspected our real relationship was, but what nobody realised was that his girlfriend was living with us, too.

“Nobody asked about that – not that it was anyone else’s business. They just thought, ‘Uh-oh, two guys living together.’”

Sir Cliff felt “almost as if people are trying to spoil our friendship” and often became frustrated because he didn’t want his companion to “put up with” that speculation too.

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He added: “I’ve made it crystal clear that this is how I like to live. I like to think that all the innuendo goes over my head, although I still get annoyed sometimes.

“We are all flesh and blood, and if I’d got married I would be living with my wife full time. 

“But I haven’t and that’s why I have chosen another way of getting through my life – and this is the way I’m going to go on.

“I don’t have to justify anything and that way the rumour-mongers don’t have any power over me – it’s quite a nice feeling.”

Sir Cliff stated that he had tried to be “as honest” as he could about his life but there were some things he “wouldn’t share with anyone”.

He added: “No one will ever get them out of me, because that’s my choice.”

Cliff Richard’s appearance of Piers Morgan’s Life Stories is available to watch in ITV Player.

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