Andi Peters is one of the UK’s best-loved TV presenters, appearing on Good Morning Britain and Lorraine to hand out enormous prizes to competition winners. But what’s his life like behind the scenes?
Image: BBC ONE)
He’s a household name who has been on our screens for longer than most of us can remember, fronting up 90s shows like Live and Kicking and the BBC’s Broom Cupboard.
However, when he left Live and Kicking in 1996, the star’s career went seemingly quiet – which was strange, seeing as he and Phillip Schofield were considered CBBC’s biggest stars.
In fact, it was a somewhat awkward exchange with Phil, 58, that inspired Andi, 50, to pursue a career in TV.
He told an interviewer: “I wrote to Phillip saying that I’d like to be a presenter. I got a signed picture back, which I sent back with a note saying that I didn’t ask for a signed picture, I wanted advice on how to become a children’s BBC presenter.
“Phillip then wrote on the back of the signed picture and sent it back saying ‘get some local radio or hospital radio experience, and I’m sure you’ll make it one day.’ And he was right!”
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Andi landed his first gig on Topman’s in-store radio station at the flagship branch in Oxford Street, London. From there, he moved into a job linking shows on ITV.
But in 1989, at just 18 years old, he’d caught the attention of the BBC, who paired him with TV legend Edd the Duck.
He graduated from the cupboard in 1993 for a move to brand new Saturday morning show, Live and Kicking.
However, Good Morning Britain’s Ben Shephard claimed Andi had actually applied to host Blue Peter, but didn’t get the part.
Andi snapped back: “Rude! Quick fact check – I was offered the Blue Peter job!
“I turned it down because I wanted to do Live & Kicking. When he offered it to me, I was really conscious that I didn’t want to do the job.
“I got really upset and ran all the way to the controller of BBC One and said ‘They just told me that I had to do Blue Peter but I don’t want to do it, I want to do [Live and Kicking] instead’.
“Luckily, he said don’t worry, you’ll get to do Saturday mornings. So yes! The rest is history.”
Comic Relief via Getty Images)
After a three-year stint presenting alongside Emma Forbes, Andi decided to go back behind the camera at LTW
While some might have considered his break away from the spotlight to have been an odd move, it turned out Andi was a natural producer and after joining Channel 4 he became the architect of their entire T4 offering.
Launching the careers of the likes of Vernon Kay, Alexa Chung, Dermot O’Leary, he even hand-picked the cast Shipwrecked – one of the first every reality TV shows.
Asked about the stars whose careers he launched and who he’s still in touch with, Andi told Metro: “Loads. Ben Shephard works on the same show as me.
“I still talk to Dermot O’Leary, Margherita Taylor, June Sarpong, Vernon.
“There’s a generation of people who grew up with T4 so it’s interesting when people come up and say it meant a lot to them. Yesterday a girl came up to me in a coffee shop and said she was in the first series of Shipwrecked and I cast her. Jeff Brazier was in Shipwrecked and he still works in TV.”
In 2003, the BBC poached Andi once again, and he moved across networks to run music and lifestyle programmes for younger viewers, including Top of the Pops, Later with Jools Holland and the Beeb’s Glastonbury coverage.
Two years later, when TOTP fell out of favour with viewers and was moved to BBC2, Andi decided it was time to move on – although he insisted the dwindling viewing figures were the reason for his change. He soon moved back in front of the camera to host City Hospital on BBC One.
He told Metro: “[Presenting is] my passion. I started out as a presenter and without that I wouldn’t have been able to produce anything.
Comic Relief via Getty Images)
“And unlike producing, you don’t have to take the work home with you. Once you’ve done the show, it’s done. When you’re producing, you’re sometimes managing big teams and that never stops. I thought I’d go through a phase of presenting for a while.”
Since then he’s narrated The Big Reunion and regularly appears hosting competitions on ITV’s Good Morning Britain and Lorraine. He also works as a rugby agent and owns a fitness modelling agency.
But what about his life outside of work? Andi has always kept his private life private, and has never mentioned a romantic partner in interviews.
He’s not believed to be married and in 2016 he appeared to suggest he was unattached by tweeting a picture of a sign about being single.
‘Now that’s a fact I like!’ he commented on the sign that read: “Superman: Single, Batman: Single, Spiderman: Single, I am single because I’m a superhero.”
However, during lockdown viewers of GMB and Lorraine did get a glimpse into Andi’s house, when he was forced to work from home like most other people.
Fans were in awe of his sprawling garden which feature a dazzling array of cottage garden flowers and mature shrubs.
It’s well known that Andi takes good care of his body and has never drunk alcohol. He follows a strict workout regime of three days on, one day off.
He said: “I have protein shakes at least every day. I go to the gym, so my muscles are fatigued a lot, so the shakes help keep the muscles strong.”
However, the star values balance in his diet, and bakes scones every Saturday morning – sharing the results with fans
And Live and Kicking fans will be pleased to hear he’s still great mates with Emma Forbes.
“We were just really lucky that Emma and I got on so well,” he said. “We still very much keep in contact. I’m godfather to one of her children, so we speak a lot.”