CHASER Anne Hegerty has revealed the inspiration behind The Governess was two relatives she didn’t like.
Speaking at The Sun’s International Women’s Day event, the 63-year-old quizzer said her strident grandmother and an aunt were behind the stern persona she uses on The Chase.
“On my mother’s side, I come from a very feminist family,” she said.
“My great grandmother campaigned for votes for women before the Suffragette movement.
“She was doing that in the 1890s and she met my great grandfather. He saw her shouting ‘Votes for women’ and thought ‘That’s the one for me’.
“Two of their daughters went to university, my great aunt became a doctor and my grandmother studied history. I didn’t get on at all well with my grandmother but I sort of channel her a bit for The Governess.
“It’s her and one of my aunts who I also didn’t get on with. My inspiration is two women I didn’t like. You can make use of women you don’t like.”
Anne was joined by reality star Ferne McCann and Loose Women star Charlene White for the International Women’s Day event, chaired by former BBC Breakfast presenter Louise Minchin.
The panel event, at The Sun’s London HQ, was watched by an audience of 100 teenagers from the mentoring group Girls Network and Greig City Academy.
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Anne, who was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome in 2003, also revealed she didn’t learn to drive until recently because her mum never drove.
“Growing up, I was convinced I couldn't learn to do anything that my mother couldn't do,” she said.
“My mother was just fabulous. Everybody adored her and she had enormous charm, and if she couldn’t learn to do something I thought I couldn’t either.
“So I didn't learn to drive until after she died because she couldn't drive. There was always something in my brain saying, ‘I can’t do this’
“Now I love the freedom to drive – so you should never let anyone else in your family define you.”
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