Sir Trevor McDonald admits he’s the ‘biggest coward’

Sir Trevor McDonald is the ‘biggest coward’ credit:Bang Showbiz
Sir Trevor McDonald is the ‘biggest coward’ credit:Bang Showbiz

Sir Trevor McDonald is the “biggest coward”.

The veteran broadcaster and newsman, 84, is famed for interviewing the likes of Tony Blair, Colonel Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein and has covered warzones across the world, but says even his mum would say he is frightened at heart.

He told Saga magazine: “As my mother would tell you, I’m the biggest coward imaginable.”

Sir Trevor – who kicked his career at ITN in 1973 as the network’s first black reporter and became the sole presenter of ITV’s News at Ten until he retired in 2008 – said he was especially frightened covering the Troubles in Northern Ireland.

He added: “In Belfast, when things got rough in the street, I’d always use the pretext, ‘I’m going to find a house where there’s a phone and call the office’.

“There were no mobile phones then, but the truth was I couldn’t stand the noise. “If I heard a shot, I’d run like hell.”

Sir Trevor was knighted in 1999 for his services to journalism, and also told Saga what has stuck with him from his years in the limelight and at the centre of life-changing and devastating global events is people’s kindness.

He added: “What’s struck me more than anything is the kindness of strangers everywhere you go.

“I see it now when I use my bus pass to travel to the tennis club.

“When passengers get off, they all say, ‘Thank you, driver’.

“Isn’t that lovely?

“In this dark, turbulent world, there are still these glimmers of decency and light and kindness and generosity and grace.”

He also told how he has now been able to ditch the permanent use of trademark glasses thanks to eye surgery.

Sir Trevor said: “I had cataract surgery two years ago, so now I only need glasses for reading and it’s lovely.

“I have to be careful about my footing these days, but everything on television that used to be a dull red now glows crimson – it’s so clear.”