Eamonn Holmes

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Eamonn Holmes
Eamon Holmes (cropped).jpg
Holmes in 2013
Born (1959-12-03) 3 December 1959 (age 60)
Belfast,[1] Northern Ireland
ResidenceWeybridge, Surrey, England
OccupationBroadcaster, journalist
Years active1979–present
Channel 5
Height5 ft 11.80 in (1.82 m)[citation needed]
TelevisionGMTVSunriseThis MorningSongs of PraiseGift WrappedHow the Other Half LivesIt's Not Me, It's YouGood Morning Britain
Spouse(s)Gabrielle Holmes m.1985 div.2005
Ruth Langsford m.2010

Eamonn Holmes OBE (born 3 December 1959[2]) is a Northern Irish journalist and broadcaster. Holmes co-presented GMTV for twelve years between 1993 and 2005, before presenting Sky News Sunrise for eleven years between 2005 and 2016. Since 2006, he has co-hosted This Morning with his wife Ruth Langsford on Fridays and during school holidays.

He has also presented How the Other Half Lives (2015–present) and It's Not Me, It's You (2016) for Channel 5. Holmes is an advocate of numerous charities and causes including Dogs Trust, Variety GB and Northern Ireland Kidney Patients' Association.

Early life and education[edit]

Holmes was educated at Holy Family Primary School [3] and St Malachy's College,[2] Belfast. He then studied journalism at the Dublin College of Business Studies.[3]


Early career[edit]

Before entering broadcasting, Holmes worked for a Dublin-based business magazine. In 1979, he joined Ulster Television, the ITV franchise contractor for Northern Ireland working as a host and reporter for the station's Farming Ulster programme. Afterwards, he teamed up with Ulster Television's sports reporters, Leslie Dawes (1922–2014) and Jackie Fullerton, to assist in covering sporting events in the province.

In 1982, Holmes was moved into news and current affairs reporting when he was tasked to anchor Ulster Television's flagship Good Evening Ulster programme. Holmes succeeded Gloria Hunniford who had presented the show since its launch in 1979. Holmes was the third choice to present the programme after trial runs by news reporters Gary Gillespie and Gerry Kelly.

In addition to his news and current affairs role, Holmes has also hosted other Ulster Television productions, including Miss Northern Ireland gala specials in 1985 and 1986. With Ulster Television, he won a Hometown Radio Award. He departed in 1986 to join the BBC. At the corporation's Manchester studios, Holmes worked as a presenter on the daytime Open Air programme which was broadcast nationally on BBC1.

Television presenting[edit]

Holmes has presented coverage of snooker, horse racing and darts on television.[4][5] He was also the presenter of ITV's coverage of the Phil Taylor vs. Raymond van Barneveld showdown at the Wembley Conference Centre in 1999.[6][7]

In 1993, Holmes started working at GMTV, hosting the first show on 1 January 1993 with Anne Davies. He had a falling-out with his subsequent co-host Anthea Turner; however, they were reunited on a BBC NI show entitled The Friday Show in 2009, where they seemed to get on better.[citation needed]

Holmes presented the BBC National Lottery game show Jet Set between 2001 and 2007.

In April 2005, he left GMTV, stating the show had run out of real news and became celebrity obsessed shortly before his departure.[8]

After leaving GMTV in April 2005, Holmes joined Sky News six months later to present the new-look Sunrise programme. He initially hosted the show with Lorna Dunkley between October 2005 and January 2007, then with Charlotte Hawkins from 2007 to 2014. Hawkins defected to ITV in March 2014 and was replaced by Isabel Webster. In September 2016, Holmes announced his departure from the programme after eleven years.

Holmes presented SUDO-Q, a BBC quiz show between December 2005 and March 2007.

In 2006, Holmes began presenting ITV daytime programme This Morning on Friday mornings. He works on the show, co-presenting This Morning with Langsford every Friday and Monday to Thursday during school holidays.

In 2006, Holmes hosted US game show The Rich List. In 2009, Holmes co-presented the ITV series The Feelgood Factor with Myleene Klass. He presented eight episodes of Songs of Praise from 2009 until 2014. In 2010, Eamonn guest presented an episode of Have I Got News for You.

In 2014, Holmes and Ruth Langsford co-hosted a 10-part ITV daytime game show, Gift Wrapped.[9][10] In 2015, Holmes and Langsford presented a six-part factual series for Channel 5 entitled Eamonn & Ruth: How the Other Half Lives. The programme returned for a second series in September 2016 and a third in June 2017.[11]

In 2016, Holmes presented Channel 5 panel show It's Not Me, It's You. Vicky Pattison and Kelly Brook were team captains on the show.[12][13]

Holmes has guest presented numerous episodes of Good Morning Britain since April 2017.[14][15]

From March 2018, Holmes co-presented Do the Right Thing with Ruth Langsford on Channel 5.

Other television work[edit]

In 2001, Holmes appeared on Lily Savage's Blankety Blank.[16][17] In 2013, Holmes was a judge on the CBBC Blue Peter talent search for a new presenter, Blue Peter – You Decide.

Holmes has made four appearances on the long-running game show Who Wants to be a Millionaire?. The first time, he played with Alex Ferguson. On 1 September 2007, he played with Kay Burley. On 20 May 2012, he returned with Ruth Langsford by his side. Finally, on 19 December 2013, to celebrate the end of Millionaire on ITV, Holmes re-appeared on the show with Alex Ferguson. Holmes has also appeared on celebrity editions of game shows including Fifteen to One, Call My Bluff, All Star Mr & Mrs, Tipping Point: Lucky Stars, Catchphrase and The Chase.

Holmes has also made regular appearances on Big Brother's Bit on the Side[18] and in 2015, he was heavily tipped as a housemate for Celebrity Big Brother 16.[19] In 2016, he appeared in two episodes of Diddy TV on CBBC.[citation needed] He has been a panellist on numerous episodes of Through the Keyhole and appeared in ITV's Guess the Star in 2017. Since November 2017, he has provided the voiceover for Biggleton on CBeebies.[citation needed]


Holmes' foray into radio broadcasting was at Downtown Radio, Northern Ireland's first commercial independent radio station, in the late 1980s.

From around 2003, Holmes presented The Eamonn Holmes Show on Radio 5 Live on Saturday mornings between 9 and 11 am for 6 years, last airing on 30 May 2009 as Holmes' contract with the BBC was not renewed.[20] In 2005, Holmes hosted his own programme on London radio station Magic 105.4.[21]

For a few weeks in 2008, Holmes took over Michael Parkinson's Sunday morning show on Radio 2.[21]

In 2016, Holmes presented his own radio show on Talkradio. The show was called Let's Talk With Eamonn Holmes and was broadcast on Saturdays from 6 am to 8 am and Sundays from 11 am to 1 pm.[22][23]

Since January 2018, Holmes has presented the weekday show on Talkradio.[24]

Other work[edit]

Holmes writes a column for The People newspaper.[25] His autobiography was released in May 2006.[26] The autobiography is called This is MY Life, a reference to another famous Irish Eamonn – Eamonn Andrews, after whom he was named.[21][27] The book reveals some of what occurred behind the scenes during his tenure at GMTV.[27]

Personal life[edit]

In 1985, Holmes married his first wife, Gabrielle Holmes, with whom he has three children, Declan, Rebecca and Niall. They separated in 1995, due to Holmes' father's death and journalism career taking a toll on their marriage.[28] In 1997, Holmes began dating Ruth Langsford, but the two kept their relationship secret out of respect for Gabrielle and his children. In 2002, Langsford gave birth to their son, Jack Alexander Holmes. Holmes and Gabrielle eventually divorced in 2005.

On 26 June 2010, Holmes married Langsford at Elvetham Hall, near Hartley Wintney, Hampshire.[28] The couple sold exclusive rights to report on the wedding ceremony and the reception to Hello! magazine in a deal that saw the publication feature the event over two issues, in July 2010.[29]

In 2006, Holmes was awarded an honorary degree by Queen's University Belfast.[2][30] He has also received an honorary degree from the University of Staffordshire.[31]

Holmes is a supporter of Manchester United FC[32] In December 2005, he opened the eulogies at the funeral of Northern Irish footballer George Best.[33]

Holmes and Langsford are patrons of Dogs Trust.[34] and the couple adopted their dog, Maggie from the charity in 2011.[35] In 2014, the couple supported the Dementia Friends campaign, which is an Alzheimer's Society initiative.[36]

In April 2015, Holmes became a celebrity ambassador for the children's charity, Variety GB.[37][38] In January 2016, he became a patron of Northern Ireland Kidney Patients' Association.[39]


Year Show Role Channel Notes
1986–1989 Open Air Presenter BBC One Series 1–3
1993–2005 GMTV Co-presenter ITV
2001–2007 Jet Set Presenter BBC One 8 series
2004 Would You Pass The 11+ Co-presenter BBC Northern Ireland 1 episode; with Christine Bleakley
2005–2007 SUDO-Q Presenter BBC One/BBC Two 4 series
2005 Ant & Dec's Gameshow Marathon Contestant ITV Series 1
The Sunday Night Project Guest presenter Channel 4 1 episode
2005–2016 Sunrise Main anchor Sky News Breakfast news programme
2006 The Rich List Presenter Fox American game show
2006– This Morning Co-presenter ITV Fridays and school holidays; with Ruth Langsford
2009 The Feelgood Factor Co-presenter 1 series; with Myleene Klass
2009–2014 Songs of Praise Presenter BBC One 8 episodes
2010 Have I Got News for You Guest presenter 1 episode
2013 Blue Peter – You Decide Judge CBBC 5 episodes
2014 Gift Wrapped Co-presenter ITV 1 series; with Ruth Langsford
2014–2018 Big Brother's Bit on the Side Regular pannellist Channel 5 24 episodes
2015– Eamonn & Ruth: How The Other Half Lives Co-presenter 3 series; with Ruth Langsford
2016 It's Not Me, It's You[40] Presenter 1 series
2017– Good Morning Britain Guest presenter ITV 14 episodes
Biggleton[41] Narrator CBeebies
2017 Eamonn & Ruth's 7 Year Itch Co-presenter Channel 5 Two-part documentary; with Ruth Langsford
2018– Do The Right Thing with Eamonn and Ruth Co-presenter 1 series; with Ruth Langsford
2018 Love Island: The Reunion Guest ITV2 1 episode; with Ruth Langsford
2018– How To Get A Good Night’s Sleep Co-presenter Channel 5 1 series; with Ruth Langsford
2019 Celebrity Gogglebox TV Watcher Channel 4 with Ruth Langsford
Year Show Role Notes
2005 Robots Bigmouth Executive & Forge (Re-dubbed voice)
2014 Mrs. Brown's Boys D'Movie RTÉ newsreader Cameo role
2019 Wonder Park Uncle Tony (Re-dubbed voice)
Year Title Role Notes
2003–2009 The Eamonn Holmes Show Presenter Sports show on BBC Radio 5 Live
2005–?? Sunday Afternoons[42] Presenter Sundays, 4 – 7 pm on Magic FM
2008 The Michael Parkinson Show Guest presenter BBC Radio 2 show
2016 Let's Talk with Eamonn Holmes Presenter Sundays, 11 am – 1 pm on Talkradio
2018— Drivetime with Eamonn Holmes Presenter Weekdays, 4 – 7 pm on Talkradio

Awards and honours[edit]

Holmes was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to broadcasting in the 2018 New Year Honours.[43] He collected his OBE from Queen Elizabeth II on 1 June 2018.

Year Group Award Result
2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 TRIC Awards Satellite/Digital TV Personality Won
2013 News Presenter/Reporter Won
Legends of Industry Award Services to Broadcasting and Journalism Won
2016 TRIC Awards News Presenter/Reporter Nominated
2018 TRIC Awards News Presenter Won


Holmes was accused of being opposed to LGBT parenting when he told two gay interviewees in a 2000 GMTV episode that "You are not meant to have children. You are going against nature!"[44] American illusionist David Blaine appeared on the show on 29 August 2001. Holmes cites this interview with Blaine as the most awkward moment of his professional career and one of TV's bloopers when he refused to speak and gave him the "evil eye".[27]

In November 2009, Jon Culshaw appeared as Holmes on The Impressions Show in a series of three comedy sketches in which he was portrayed as having an appetite so uncontrollable that he eats a sofa, flowers and even a guest (Frankie Dettori), using the catchphrase 'I was fierce hungry, so I was'. Even though Holmes had interviewed Culshaw and his co-star Debra Stephenson on This Morning to promote the show,[45] after the programme aired the presenter instructed his lawyers to send a letter of complaint to the BBC.[46] The letter resulted in an apology from the BBC along with a withdrawal of any future comedy sketches featuring Holmes.[47] Both the complaint itself and the outcome of Holmes's legal action drew generally unfavourable criticism from media observers and online commentators.[48][49][50]

While presenting This Morning in October 2011, Holmes described singer Jonathan Wilkes as "retarded" on air. He later apologised after complaints and calls for him to be sacked. Holmes said: "I have to say sorry to three or four of you who are upset because I used the word retarded. You seem to have taken it personally or think I am being insulting. I would never want to do that. There is this man who has an autistic child and said I insulted his child. I would never use it in that context. Sorry if that caused you offence".[51][52]

In October 2011, Holmes provoked criticism by suggesting that a rape victim should take taxis in future, leading to accusations of victim blaming.[53]

On 12 May 2016, Eamonn Holmes provoked criticism by comparing an attack by West Ham fans to the Hillsborough disaster.[citation needed]

In November 2019, Holmes was reportedly reprimanded by ITV studio bosses for his use of the term 'Uppity' to describe Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex request for privacy in July of 2019.[54] ITV have since confirmed on the 25 November 2019 Holmes was not & will not be reprimanded but instead called in for a "point of learning" regarding the usage of the term and it's possible interpretations.[55]


  1. ^ https://www.irishnews.com/lifestyle/2018/06/06/news/eamonn-holmes-says-wife-ruth-trying-to-fatten-me-up-so-nobody-else-wants-me--1345681
  2. ^ a b c Holmes receives honorary degree Archived 31 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine BBC News, 4 July 2006
  3. ^ a b Passed/Failed: An education in the life of Eamonn Holmes, television presenter The Independent, 28 June 2007
  4. ^ Sport in My World: Eamonn Holmes Archived 8 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine The Daily Telegraph, 28 April 2006
  5. ^ Eamonn Holmes Archived 15 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine Feelgood Factor, ITV, 2009.
  6. ^ Filmography HOLMES, Eamonn Archived 22 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine BFI – Film & TV Database
  7. ^ SIMPLY THE BEST PHIL TAYLOR V RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD Archived 22 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine BFI – Film & TV Database
  8. ^ Holmes bids farewell to GMTV sofa Archived 1 September 2008 at the Wayback Machine BBC News, 27 April 2005
  9. ^ "Gift Wrapped Episode 1". Itv.com. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  10. ^ "Eamonn, Ruth to host ITV quiz show". Digital Spy. 10 July 2014. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  11. ^ [1][permanent dead link]
  12. ^ "Eamonn Holmes to host "cheeky" panel show about dating". Digital Spy. 4 May 2016. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  13. ^ "Pre-registration for IT'S NOT ME, IT'S YOU with KELLY BROOK, VICKY PATTISON & EAMONN HOLMES from SRO Audiences". sroaudiences.com. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  14. ^ "Eamonn Holmes made his breakfast TV return this morning". Digital Spy. 10 April 2017. Archived from the original on 28 July 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  15. ^ "Eamonn Holmes replacing Piers Morgan on GMB". Digital Spy. 25 May 2017. Archived from the original on 20 September 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  16. ^ Lily Savage's Blankety Blank. 18 February 2001. ITV. Repeated 25 August 2016 on Challenge TV.
  17. ^ Lily Savage's Blankety Blank. 3 June 2001. ITV.
  18. ^ "Day 24: Eamonn Holmes tries to break in – Celebrity Big Brother". Channel 5. Archived from the original on 5 September 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  19. ^ "Celebrity Big Brother summer 2015 – who's going into the house?". Radio Times. Archived from the original on 19 September 2016. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  20. ^ Plunkett, John (8 May 2009). "Danny Baker and Christian O'Connell to front new shows on BBC Radio 5 Live". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 24 December 2013. Retrieved 23 May 2009.
  21. ^ a b c Eamonn Holmes – This is his Surrey life Archived 13 May 2010 at the Wayback Machine Surrey Life, March 2008
  22. ^ "Eamonn Holmes to present new show on talkRADIO". Digital Spy. 8 March 2016. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  23. ^ "talkRADIO Schedule". Talkradio.co.uk. Archived from the original on 3 September 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  24. ^ "Eamonn Holmes joins all-new talkRADIO". talkradio.co.uk.
  25. ^ Eamonn – Man of the people Archived 10 January 2007 at the Wayback Machine The People
  26. ^ This Is My Life: Eamonn Holmes: The Autogiography Archived 9 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine Amazon.com
  27. ^ a b c Eamonn Holmes: My Life In Media Archived 25 September 2015 at the Wayback Machine The Independent, 10 July 2006
  28. ^ a b Holmes and partner Ruth walk down aisle The Belfast Telegraph, 26 June 2010
  29. ^ Only in Hello! Eamonn and Ruth marry surrounded by showbiz friends Archived 19 September 2011 at the Wayback Machine Hello!, 28 June 2010
  30. ^ Ulster-born TV presenter Eamonn Holmes was today presented with an honorary degree from Queen's University The Belfast Telegraph, 3 July 2006
  31. ^ Honorary Doctors 1986 – 2005 Archived 5 July 2008 at the Wayback Machine University of Staffordshire
  32. ^ "He has a passion for John Wayne movies" The Belfast Telegraph, 26 April 1996, i'm also Gordon's minyon
  33. ^ Final farewell to football legend Archived 17 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine BBC News, 3 December 2005
  34. ^ Holmes, Eamonn. "Charity – Eamonn Holmes". Eamonn Holmes. Archived from the original on 26 May 2016. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  35. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 3 January 2014. Retrieved 16 September 2013.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  36. ^ "Alzheimer's Society achieves one million Dementia Friends ambition". Alzheimer's Society. 21 February 2015. Archived from the original on 23 February 2015.
  37. ^ "Eamonn Holmes Inducted as Celebrity Ambassador for Variety". Variety.org.uk. 30 April 2015. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  38. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 31 May 2015. Retrieved 29 July 2015.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  39. ^ Beattie, Jilly (23 January 2016). "Eamonn Holmes made patron of Northern Ireland kidney charity". Belfastlive.co.uk. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  40. ^ Guide, British Comedy (29 April 2016). "Eamonn Holmes to host Channel 5 panel show". Comedy.co.uk. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  41. ^ Duff, Seamus (2 October 2017). "Eamonn Holmes bags surprising new job – after fluffing the audition". Daily Mirror. Archived from the original on 2 October 2017. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  42. ^ "Magic FM signs Eamonn Holmes to present Sunday show". Campaignlive.co.uk. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  43. ^ "Ringo Starr and Barry Gibb knighted in New Year Honours". ITV News.
  44. ^ Jane Simon; Brian McIver (21 July 2010). "Dad'll do nicely". Daily Record.
  45. ^ Eamonn Holmes Eat Your Heart Out Archived 25 July 2010 at the Wayback Machine The Impressions Show with Culshaw and Stephenson, BBC Comedy, 27 November 2009
  46. ^ Eamonn Holmes threatens BBC with legal action after comedy show mocks his weight Archived 22 July 2010 at the Wayback Machine The Daily Telegraph, 19 July 2010
  47. ^ BBC apologises to Eamonn Holmes over weight jibes Archived 22 July 2010 at the Wayback Machine BBC News, 19 July 2010
  48. ^ Julie Burchill If Eamonn Holmes can't see the funny side of fatness, he should lay off the pies The Belfast Telegraph, 21 July 2010
  49. ^ Eamonn Holmes gets the BBC jokes eating away at him banned Archived 5 March 2017 at the Wayback Machine The Guardian, 22 July 2010
  50. ^ Andrew M Brown If Eamonn Holmes doesn't like the BBC teasing him about being fat, there's a simple solution Archived 24 July 2010 at the Wayback Machine The Daily Telegraph, 19 July 2010
  51. ^ O'Connor, Niall. Eamonn says sorry for calling guest 'retard'. herald.i.e. 8 October 2011.
  52. ^ Small, Louise. Eamonn Holmes sorry for 'retarded' comment. The Belfast Telegraph. 8 October 2011.
  53. ^ "Eamonn Holmes cricised for controversial rape comment". The Telegraph. 27 October 2011. Archived from the original on 28 October 2011. Retrieved 27 October 2011.
  54. ^ RACE ROW Eamonn Holmes told off by ITV bosses for calling Meghan Markle ‘uppity’ after viewer complains term is racial slur The Sun, 24 Novenmber 2019.
  55. ^ This Morning’s Eamonn Holmes won’t be reprimanded by ITV for calling Megan Markle ‘uppity’ following race row Metro, 25 November 2019.

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