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Robbie Williams is extremely unlikely to join Take That for their 25th anniversary tour after he is plagued by ‘mystery illness’ and conflicting schedules

TAKE THAT’s 25th anniversary tour is going to be the biggest of their career. But despite initial plans for ROBBIE WILLIAMS to join them on the road, I can reveal their ­former bandmate is now extremely unlikely to play a part. Robbie, who recently cut short his European tour due to a “mystery illness”, has […]

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TAKE THAT’s 25th anniversary tour is going to be the biggest of their career.

But despite initial plans for ROBBIE WILLIAMS to join them on the road, I can reveal their ­former bandmate is now extremely unlikely to play a part.

Flynet Pictures
Robbie Williams cut his European tour short after he was struck down by a ‘mystery illness’[/caption]

Take That are about to embark on their 25th anniversary tour
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Take That are about to embark on their 25th anniversary tour[/caption]

Robbie, who recently cut short his European tour due to a “mystery illness”, has recorded secret tracks with GARY BARLOW, MARK OWEN and HOWARD DONALD to feature on the compilation.

But fans shouldn’t expect to see the songs performed live by the four of them.

Robbie’s absence from the tour is the clearest indication yet that Take That will remain as a threesome after Gary told me last week they have given up on JASON ORANGE ever returning.

An insider said: “The band see themselves now as a trio.

“When the Greatest Hits tour was first discussed, the feeling was it would be great to get Robbie on board. But it’s become increasingly difficult to get everybody together.

“Gary, Mark and Howard have the same schedule and it’s far ­easier to plan around.”

Insiders revealed it has been difficult to coordinate all the members of the band for the upcoming reunion tour
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Insiders revealed it has been difficult to coordinate all the members of the band for the upcoming reunion tour[/caption]

Robbie Williams rejoins Take That for the One Love Manchester Concert

I was the first to reveal Take That were organising a commemorative tour to mark a quarter of a century in music.

Gary later revealed in this column the band wanted to include the US and the Middle East as part of the schedule, as well as huge stadiums in the UK and Ireland.

And there were positive signs Robbie was going to join them for the first time since their 2011 Progress Live tour after he took part in the secret studio sessions.

Robbie recently took part in some secret recording sessions with the band
Rex Features
Robbie recently took part in some secret recording sessions with the band[/caption]

The band occasionally regrouped for performances such as the 2011 Echo Music Awards in Berlin
PA:Press Association
The band occasionally regrouped for performances such as the 2011 Echo Music Awards in Berlin[/caption]

Gary suggested that Jason Orange would not be returning to the band
Getty Images - Getty
Gary suggested that Jason Orange would not be returning to the band[/caption]

But it seems Robbie’s appearance with Gary, Mark and Howard on the last episode of Let It Shine in February, could be the final time fans see them perform as a four-piece for quite some time.

And that’s despite the fact Robbie is an executive ­producer for Take That’s musical The Band, which has its opening night in Manchester next Tuesday.

With two hit albums under their belts, they have not done too badly as a trio.

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TV legend Sir David Attenborough reveals he wants to keep presenting past his 100th birthday — despite being on television for the past 65 years

TELLY legend Sir David Attenborough is planning to carry on broadcasting past his 100th birthday. The 91-year-old is not considering retirement with a packed schedule of nature documentaries on the way. His new series Blue Planet 2 hits our screens on Sunday. Sir David said: “I see no reason whatsoever why I can’t live past […]

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TELLY legend Sir David Attenborough is planning to carry on broadcasting past his 100th birthday.

The 91-year-old is not considering retirement with a packed schedule of nature documentaries on the way.

It has been 65 years since Sir David Attenborough joined BBC television in 1952
BBC

His new series Blue Planet 2 hits our screens on Sunday. Sir David said: “I see no reason whatsoever why I can’t live past 100.

“Earth has enough wonders to make more than three Planet Earth series.”

He also has films prepared on ants, extinct sea-dragons, eggs and the elephant that inspired Disney film Dumbo. He added: “The beauty of natural history programmes is they can appeal across all ages and all conditions and people can take out of it their own particular interests.”

Sir David has already spent 65 years on TV. He has journeyed to some of the most remote parts of the planet, come face-to-face with cannibals and spent time with a colony of gorillas.

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The TV legend says he does not see why he could not live past 100[/caption]

WARNING: Use of this copyright image is subject to the terms of use of BBC Pictures' Digit
Sir David Attenborough revealed he has a ‘new film about ants that are behaving in a rather odd way’[/caption]

But he has no interest in going further afield. He added: “There’s no life in space. Here we’ve got this wonderful kaleidoscope, this fantastic world.”

  • Blue Planet 2 is on BBC One at 8pm on Sunday, October 29.
Sir David Attenborough was in a hot air balloon for opening sequence of Planet Earth II

WARNING: Use of this image is subject to the terms of use of BBC Pictures' Digital Picture
The broadcaster revealed he has a packed schedule with upcoming nature documentaries[/caption]

WARNING: Use of this copyright image is subject to the terms of use of BBC Pictures' Digit
Sir David Attenborough could reach a milestone of 75 years on the television[/caption]

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Baroness Michelle Mone offered £350k to join Celebrity Big Brother… but she’d rather have a go at Strictly

I DOUBT many of the House of Lords would have been watching SARAH HARDING’s antics on Celebrity Big Brother earlier this year. But the show’s bosses are tempting the lords and ladies to watch the next series — by trying to sign up their fellow peer MICHELLE MONE. The lingerie businesswoman, who was made a […]

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I DOUBT many of the House of Lords would have been watching SARAH HARDING’s antics on Celebrity Big Brother earlier this year.

But the show’s bosses are tempting the lords and ladies to watch the next series — by trying to sign up their fellow peer MICHELLE MONE.

Getty - Contributor
CBB bosses want to sign up Tory peer Michelle Mone for next year’s all-female show[/caption]

The lingerie businesswoman, who was made a Baroness in 2015, has been offered £350,000 to appear in the 2018 CBB series.

That would be one of the biggest fees they’ve ever paid out, after they lured KATIE PRICE into the house in 2015 for more than £400,000.

Bosses want glamorous Scot Michelle to take part in the all-female series of CBB, as they try to attract a classier set of celebrities rather than the usual D-listers.

But it is thought that the Baroness, who has since sold her share of lingerie business Ultimo, has rejected the offer as she would prefer to do Strictly Come Dancing.

After Sarah Harding’s success on the show, Big Brother chiefs want to try and attract a classier set of celebrities
Channel 5

A show source said: “Producers told Michelle how keen they were to get her on next year’s show.

“They offered a lot of money to start with and kept increasing their offer.

“But Michelle has told them it’s a firm no. While she loves watching CBB, she doesn’t think the House of Lords would be overly impressed with her going into the other house.

“It doesn’t exactly scream serious businesswoman and peer.

Michelle rejected the offer as she would prefer to do Strictly Come Dancing
Getty - Contributor

“She has always said she would happily go on Dragons’ Den if that opportunity arose and she quite fancies having a go at Strictly next year.”

Tory peer Michelle says she has had to tone down her glamorous designer outfits to fit in at Westminster.

She told The Sun earlier this year: “There can be no legs showing above the knee, no showing the arms above the elbows and no showing your cleavage.”

Maybe it’s best to give Strictly a swerve after all then . . .

Bad Omen for radio listeners

Radio 4’s Book at Bedtime is meant to be a relaxing listen before drifting off to sleep, but the station’s latest choice of story left fans wide awake – and quaking.

Of all of the books available, bosses chose horror classic The Omen, which tells the story of a child called Damien who is the anti-Christ.

Bosses for Radio 4’s Book at Bedtime chose horror classic The Omen, which tells the story of a child called Damien who is the anti-Christ
Fox

Listeners have since complained in their droves moaning that the tale, based on the 1976 horror film, caused “anxiety” and reading it before bed was “potentially harmful”.

One fan who tuned in said that the Beeb should be airing things “we can all enjoy” in the slot, which broadcasts at 10.45pm.

Upset listeners let the BBC know how annoyed they were by ringing into Radio 4’s audience response show Feedback to complain about the tale — read by Game of Thrones star OWEN TEALE on Friday October 13.

One caller from Hoddesdon, in Hertfordshire, said: “I think there is an increasing number of listeners who experience the negative effects of anxiety and I think that to broadcast trailers like that without notice and at different times of the day is unhelpful and potentially harmful.”

Fans complained of ‘anxiety’ and said listening to the book, based on the 1976 horror, before bed was ‘potentially harmful’
Other20th Century Fox

Another listener from Sevenoaks, Kent, raged: “Why on earth read The Omen on Book at Bedtime? Even the narrator said today that he was now so scared it gave him a chill just thinking about it. Please choose things we can all enjoy.”

Radio 4’s commissioning editor for drama and fiction, Jeremy Howe, defended the move and said the station had previously read The Exorcist and Rosemary’s Baby in the bedtime slot.

He said The Omen is a “completely iconic horror title” and every listener would have known what to expect and added that the tale was like a “fantastic fairground ride”.

In the run up to Halloween I’d expect nothing less.

Der's daddy dream

FACTOR‘s DERMOT O’LEARY is finally ready to give fatherhood a dummy run.

I can reveal the telly host has signed up to front a new CBBC show where he steps in as a dad for the day.

The series called VIParents was filming in Glasgow last week where Dermot was spotted taking the kids from a pet shop to football training.

A telly source said: “Dermot thinks it will be good practice for when he has his own.”

The TV host has said before: “I do want kids with my wife but when we both think it’s the right thing to happen.”

At least he’s getting some practice in now.

A Trump card by Murray

DONALD TRUMP managed to win the Presidential election off the back of his catchphrase “Make America great again”.

And now pub landlord AL MURRAY is hoping he can triumph in the Christmas TV stakes by reinventing the slogan for his own use.

Donald Trump won the Presidential election off the back of his catchphrase ‘Make America great again’
Getty Images - Getty

The comedian is returning to ITV during the festive period for a one-off special, Al Murray’s Make Christmas Great Again.

The landlord will be throwing open his pub doors for a whole host of festive cheer including seasonal games, gags and celebrity guests popping in for a pint or two.

Make Christmas Great Again follows his popular outings on ITV with his chat show Al Murray’s Happy Hour and an Audience With . . .  shows.

Pub landlord comedian Al Murray is set to hijack Trump’s success with ITV show Make Christmas Great Again
EPA

Since then he’s managed to notch up an impressive three appearances in front of THE QUEEN at The Royal Variety Performance.

He had better have a sherry on hand in case she decides to drop in for a festive tipple.

Soapbox

ALTHOUGH he’s starting to feel guilty about his recent behaviour, Max responds to fresh pressure from Fi and continues to manipulate Carmel in EASTENDERS.

With the schemers needing insider information from the council, Max does all he can to access some sealed bids.

But later he tells Carmel he doesn’t need her help, suggesting his conscience has kicked in.

In CORONATION STREET Phelan comes face to face with an old adversary who may scupper his latest evil plans.

Faye confronts Seb with her suspicions and he finally confides in her about his awful home life.

And the alarm is raised when Seb finds his mum unconscious on the floor after an overdose.

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Strictly’s Susan Calman reveals she attempted suicide at 16, but says BBC dance show has brought joy to her life

AS the Strictly house band struck up Bring Me Sunshine, comic Susan Calman bounced before the cameras with unbridled joy. Only 4ft 11in, the Scottish comedian has been a ballroom revelation, delighting viewers with her fun-filled routines. But for those who know her well, the old Morecambe and Wise theme tune couldn’t have been more […]

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AS the Strictly house band struck up Bring Me Sunshine, comic Susan Calman bounced before the cameras with unbridled joy.

Only 4ft 11in, the Scottish comedian has been a ballroom revelation, delighting viewers with her fun-filled routines.

Susan Calman credits Strictly for helping to lift her out of a depression

But for those who know her well, the old Morecambe and Wise theme tune couldn’t have been more fitting.

For away from the Saturday night sparkle, the 42-year-old comic has faced a long-term battle with depression — and at her lowest ebb was self- harming and even attempted suicide.

In her autobiography, Susan revealed: “I felt alone, isolated, confused about why I couldn’t just make myself happy. I’d started cutting myself.

“I would sit in my room punishing myself, a common thing to do among many depressives, and I still have the scars on my arms from that time.”

The comedian admits to feeling ‘alone’ in her autobiography
Susan Colman says the ‘joy’ shre gets on Saturday night is helping her mood

And at the age of just 16, she tried to kill herself.

“I took a load of pills one day because I couldn’t see any way out.”

She was sectioned for her own safety under the Mental Health Act. Her brief and terrifying stay in an adolescent psychiatric ward stiffened her resolve never to do anything that would result in a return visit.

Writing in her book Cheer Up Love, she said: “I was terrified. No doors on the toilets or showers, being watched 24 hours a day.”

Twitter
The Scottish comedian jokes that she still ‘smiles with a degree of cynicism’ just like this childhood photo[/caption]

The Picture Library Ltd
Susan Colman and wife Lee, who has been front row at all of her Strictly performances[/caption]

But a large dose of Strictly has been the perfect antidote for Susan.

She said: “The joy I am getting from performing on a Saturday night. It is helping my mood and how I feel about things.”

But the dark fog can strike at any time. Winston Churchill called his depression his “black dog”. Susan calls hers the “Crab of Hate”.

She said: “Out of the blue, the Crab climbs up my back, pinches both of my earlobes and whispers gently to me things I don’t want to hear: ‘No one likes you. No one would miss you if you weren’t here. Why do you even bother? Everyone laughs at you when you leave the room. You’re useless. And you smell.’

Rex Features
Susan Calman is a famous for her work on TV and radio panel shows[/caption]

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Susan Calman is a regular guest on BBC Radio 4 and has hosted Woman’s House and Listomania[/caption]

“I’ve told my wife about him — and it is a him — and all I need to say to her is that the Crab’s about and she knows what I’m going through.”
Her loyal other half Lee Cormack, 46, has been sitting in the front row for all Susan’s Strictly performances.

When the pocket rocket performed her Wonder Woman samba, Lee was front and centre wearing a matching superhero crown.

Susan met Lee, a local authority lawyer, 15 years ago. They became civil partners in 2012 and married three years later.

Susan Calman has revealed she once tried to take her own life
The comedian has consistently impressed viewers on Strictly

Susan said: “They were two of the happiest days of my life. And, yes, being married does make a difference. I don’t like it when people say it’s just a bit of paper. Not to me it isn’t. And anyway, it’s something gay people fought for over many years.”

They now live together in Glasgow with their five cats. First there is the conventionally named Pickle.

Then Daisy Fay Harper — named after the protagonist in a 1981 coming of age novel; Olivia Pope — a character from the US TV drama Scandal; Dr Abigail Bartlet — the First Lady in US drama The West Wing; and DCI Jane Tennison, the cop played by Helen Mirren in Prime Suspect.

Susan faced criticism for taking part in Strictly because it does not feature same-sex dancing couples. But she fought back, adding: “There’s nothing more powerful than having an openly gay woman on the biggest show on TV, whose wife is on the front row, doing what she wants to do.”

Susan Calman said speaking about her depression may help connect her to the public

A Strictly superfan, Susan was moved to tears at the launch when she was paired with pro dancer Kevin Clifton.

“I feel like I’ve won the lottery,” she gushed, admitting that she even has a picture of Grimsby’s finest stuck on her fridge. Yet her childhood couldn’t have been further away from the glitz of the ballroom.

She said: “We weren’t a family of performers — my father is a doctor. If I’d said to them I wanted to be a comedian, it would have been tantamount to saying I wanted to be a prostitute.”

The daughter of Sir Kenneth Calman, chancellor of Glasgow University and former chief medical officer for England and Scotland, and Lady Anne, Susan had a charmed upbringing with private education.

PA:Press Association
Susan Calman said she would sit in her room ‘punishing herself’ on her lowest days[/caption]

The 42-year-old comedian is partnered with professional dancer Kevin Clifton

But it was in her formative years she discovered she had something special that would come to define her life — she could make people laugh.

“My teenage years weren’t the happiest times,” she admits.

“I wanted to be quite different from the other kids who wanted to get married, while part of my soul was burning to get on stage. But I didn’t have the confidence.

“I’m the short, slightly overweight lass who was a bit bullied at school and who made everybody laugh. Now I do the same thing on stage. I always wanted to perform.

Getty - Contributor
Susan Calman faced criticism for taking part in Strictly because it does not feature same-sex couples[/caption]

“I thought if I could get attention in that way, people would like me more. It’s only since doing stand-up that my confidence has increased.”

Susan was also aware of her sexuality at an early age. When she won the role of Virgin Mary in her junior school’s nativity, she burst into tears. She told her mother that she couldn’t possibly play Mary, “because it would mean kissing a boy”.

She revealed: “I’ve always known I was gay. I went out with a couple of men when I was 17 to check.

Things have changed since I was growing up but I’ve never had a problem.” Although she did once say that growing up gay in Glasgow “was as easy as being a vegan abattoir worker.”

Rex Features
The Strictly star says she was aware of her sexuality from a very young age[/caption]

Susan studied law at Glasgow University and took part in a three-month stint in North Carolina working with criminals on death row.

After returning to the UK she moved up the career ladder, spending seven years in commercial law.

She was on her way to becoming a partner at a Scottish firm, when in 2006 she quit to carve out a new career as a stand-up.

She said: “I’m not good at handling change so it was quite brave. I’d never been to a comedy club when I did my first gig.”In her first year on the stand-up circuit she earned just £250. That rose to £400 the next year, and £1,000 the one after that.

Rex Features
In Susan’s autobiography ‘Cheer Up Love’, reveals she was once sectioned under the Mental Health Act[/caption]

“I slept on the floor of my friend Michelle if ever I performed in London,” she recalled.

“I’d catch the £1 Megatrain from Glasgow to Manchester. I’d hunker down in bus stations. I’ve played to two people in a gym hall.”

Soon radio beckoned and Susan became a regular guest on Radio 4 panel shows including The News Quiz and The Now Show. She has also appeared as a panellist on TV shows Have I Got News For You, Mock The Week and QI.

Parents of young kids will also know her from CBBC shows The Dog Ate My Homework and Top Class.

The Scottish comedian has quickly become a fan favourite

But Strictly has turned her into a household name On Saturday night it looked like her dancing dreams might be over when she found herself joint bottom of the leader board, scoring just 16 points with her cha cha cha to Little Mix.

But she was saved by the public, swerving the dance off and making it through to this weekend’s Halloween special.

Susan said: “Being part of the show feels amazing and every day I appreciate what’s happening. If I could say anything to my 16-year-old self it would be, ‘Don’t worry, one day you’re going to be on Strictly.’”

  • Contact Samaritans free on 116 123, even from a mobile with no credit. The number won’t show on your bill. Or email jo@samaritans.org or see samaritans.org.
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