Page last updated at 07:59 GMT, Friday, 22 May 2009 08:59 UK

Coleen Nolan lets loose on her life

By Fiona Pryor
Entertainment reporter, BBC News

The Loose Women
Colen Nolan (centre) is one of the co-hosts on daytime talk show Loose Women

"I can't keep my gob shut - someone asks me a question and I answer it," says Coleen Nolan.

The 44-year-old, who shot to fame as a teenager singing alongside her sisters, reveals her perpetual honesty as a co-host on ITV daytime's show Loose Women has got her into trouble in the past.

"In the first two years of the relationship with my husband, it was a nightmare because I got home a lot and he wasn't talking to me because of something I had said.

'Broken hearts'

"Sometimes he will remind me that his 84-year-old mother is watching," she giggles.

It does seem Nolan is more than happy to discuss issues that some people in the public eye would deem private or taboo.

"I just don't think you can edit yourself on that show, because for me the whole thing is about honesty."

She seems to have deployed the same frankness in writing her autobiography, Upfront and Personal.

Coleen Nolan and family
Nolan pictured with husband Ray and her children

In the book, she talks of the upset caused when she found out her sister, Anne, had been abused by their father as a child.

She also reveals how she had a termination as a teenager, without the knowledge of her parents, who have both since passed away.

"There's no way I could have told my parents that, because it would have broken their hearts," she says.

"I'd never have done that - offloaded my guilt just to make me feel better. And it would have really upset them."

However, Nolan has tried to discourage her family from keeping secrets.

"They know everything, I've always told them everything," she says.

'Shockingly bad' marriage

Her eldest son Jake, 16, has already read the book and she is happy for the rest of her children to see it too.

"I've always said if I was going to write an autobiography I would want it to be totally honest.

"When you're writing it, you're thinking, 'oh gosh should I put that in?'


I look at a cake and I put half a stone on

Coleen Nolan on her weight battle

"But, it happened to me, I'm human, I made mistakes, things happened to me and I came through them.

"As long as you learn by your mistakes and don't keep making them, then I think you have to learn to forgive yourself for certain things you did," explains Nolan.

She admits working on the book allowed taking time to reflect on the good and bad experiences throughout her life.

"There's been many more highs than lows, but unfortunately the lows were really low," she says.

She recalls the end of her marriage to actor and comedian Shane Richie as one of them.

"I suppose my first marriage was great for 10 years and then shockingly bad for the last four."

But both have moved on and Nolan has been happily married to musician Ray Fensome for two years.

She insists appearing on TV is just a job, and the fame side of the bargain does not affect her.

A young Coleen Nolan
Coleen Nolan is hoping to make a return to singing

"It's funny, when I go shopping with my husband I don't notice people looking at me," she laughs.

"It's great, but the day I start believing is probably the day I need to stop."

Nolan says when fans do approach her, they are mainly women who have been inspired by her recent weight loss.

"I've had a really, really great response from people and that gives you a really great incentive to carry on," she says.

"It will always be a battle because I'm prone to weight gain. I look at a cake and I put half a stone on," she jokes.

Taking part in ITV's reality TV show Dancing On Ice helped shift further pounds, although Nolan insists she only said yes to it because she was "talked into doing it".

It seems there is no stopping Nolan, who as well as bringing up her family, writing newspaper columns and appearing on TV, is considering making a musical comeback with The Nolans.

"There's lots of talk about me and my sisters reforming. For the first time ever we've all started talking about it, so who knows, it could happen," she admits.

"There's part of me that thinks that's the next challenge now, because singing will always be my first love."



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