'I'm A Celebrity': Matt Hancock says politicians are people too as he discloses phobias

'I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!' Matt Hancock (ITV/Shutterstock)
I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! contestant Matt Hancock said he is scared of snakes. (ITV/Shutterstock)

Matt Hancock has confessed he is scared of snakes and is expecting to do a lot of trials as he prepares to enter the I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! camp. 

The former health secretary's arrival in the jungle was teased by hosts Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly at the end of Tuesday night's episode and Hancock has given his first official interview to ITV ahead of appearing on the reality show.

Hancock, 44, said: “Lots of people have a view on me from being health secretary in the pandemic, dealing with some very difficult issues, but that’s not the whole story...

Read more: Matt Hancock says viewers will see him 'warts and all' on 'I'm A Celebrity'

"I have had a lot of supportive messages from people who can see what I am trying to do to show that politicians are people too.”

Watch: Ant and Dec tease Matt Hancock's arrival in the I'm A Celeb camp

The elected MP for West Suffolk admitted he is expecting to be voted for a lot trials and revealed his biggest fear is snakes.

He said: “I have never come across a snake at close quarters and so I am pretty worried about anything to do with snake.

"I am not claustrophobic or at least I haven’t been found to be but that’s the thing about I’m A Celebrity – it is the unknown."

Hancock added: “I wouldn’t be surprised if I end up doing some of the trials! I am hoping I can win some stars for the camp, but most of all I am looking forward to being myself.”

Matt Hancock
Matt Hancock admitted he could do a lot of trials in I'm A Celebrity. (AP)

Asked how he feel about meeting the other contestants, including Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles, Loose Women’s Charlene White, singer Boy George and rugby player and minor Royal Mike Tindall, Hancock said he hopes to cheer them up.

He said: “I am a pretty cheerful person and so I hope I can keep everyone’s morale up. I like to muck in and I think I will be picking up a lot of firewood for everyone. I hope to do my bit when it comes to cooking too.”

But the father-of-three admitted: “I am not very good on low [amounts of] food. It really shows people who they truly are because you do let your guard down when you can’t eat.

"But I have done quite a lot of camping in quite extreme places. I love the adventure of it and so the camping side I will be fine with.”

Asked how he would feel if he was crowned King of the Jungle, Hancock said: "“It would be the icing on the cake and that would be wonderful. But I am not expecting it."

Mike Tindall MBE,, Owen Warner, Olivia Attwood, Charlene White, Boy George, Chantelle Douglas, Sue Cleaver, Chris Moyles, Babatúndé Aléshé and Jill Scott MBE - I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here 2022 (ITV/Lifted Entertainment)
Matt Hancock hopes to cheer the other celebrities up when he arrives in camp. (ITV/Lifted Entertainment)

The politician is set to move into the jungle camp alongside fellow newcomer, comedian Seann Walsh, during Wednesday evening's show.

Hancock was forced to resign from government after his affair with advisor Gina Colangelo was exposed.

He previously revealed he turned down an offer from ITV to take part in the reality show twice, before making a last minute U-turn last week.

As an elected MP he is being paid an annual salary to serve his constituents.

He said his constituents are "still my first priority" and revealed he has agreed with producers that he can be reached at any point during filming if any "urgent constituency matter" arises.

His parliamentary whip has been suspended while he is taking part in the show, meaning he is not a member of the Conservative Party.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson (left) with Health Secretary Matt Hancock during a visit to Bassetlaw District General Hospital in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, while on the campaign trail for the General Election. PA Photo. Picture date: Friday November 22, 2019. See PA story POLITICS Election. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire
Matt Hancock was health secretary to prime minister Boris Johnson during the COVID pandemic. (PA)

The former government minister – who was diagnosed with dyslexia at the age of 18 – is promoting his Dyslexia Screening and Teacher Training Bill to ensure no child leaves primary education without being diagnosed with the learning difficulty which affects reading.

Read more: I'm A Celeb's Boy George confronts Charlene White over being 'controlling'

Hancock vowed to declare his I'm A Celebrity salary to parliament and donate it to St Nicholas Hospice in Suffolk and causes supporting dyslexia.