Page last updated at 09:59 GMT, Saturday, 13 March 2010

Samantha Cameron tells of life with Tory leader

David and Samantha Cameron
Mr Cameron has said his wife gives him valuable advice

The wife of Tory leader David Cameron has spoken of his cooking and parenting skills in her first TV interview about their relationship and home life.

In an interview with ITV1's Trevor McDonald, Samantha Cameron said he was "very strong" and a "fantastic dad".

Mrs Cameron also admitted her husband had some irritating habits and said the prospect of their life changing if he became prime minister was "daunting".

She is expected to feature on the campaign trail ahead of the election.

Mr Cameron was the older brother of Mrs Cameron's close friend and they met on a family holiday in 1992. At the time Mr Cameron was an adviser to then Chancellor Norman Lamont.

'The one'

Mrs Cameron told the programme, entitled : "I was 21 and an art student in Bristol and he was 25 and worked for the government and it was a sort of holiday romance."

Mrs Cameron, who was interviewed as part of a programme about her husband entitled Trevor McDonald meets David Cameron, said although she had been only 23 when they got engaged "I felt fairly confident that, you know, Dave was the one for me."

The couple's six-year-old son Ivan, who had cerebral palsy and epilepsy, died last year. They have two other children.

Mrs Cameron said: "We've been together 18 years now and we've been through some, you know, fairly tough times and I can honestly say that I don't think in all that time he's ever let me down. And he's always been incredibly strong, and kind, and supportive."

Mrs Cameron also told the programme Mr Cameron was a "fantastic dad" who found his children's take on life "very relaxing".

But she said while he was a good cook, he tended to make a "terrible mess" and was not good at clearing up after himself.

She added it can be "quite annoying" when he fiddles with his phone and Blackberry.

Mrs Cameron said her husband was a "terrible channel flicker" and had a fondness for repeat viewings of films.

She said "like most men... he likes watching Westerns and all three of the Godfather films, sort of again and again and again".

On the prospect of him winning power at the general election - expected to be held on 6 May - she said: "If he did become prime minister I would be incredibly proud of him.

"And, and our life would change, you know and that is daunting and I'm sure we would have to make sacrifices. But for me personally it would be a huge honour to do everything that I possibly could to support him and make sure that he could do the job to the very best of his abilities."

'Secret weapon?'

Mr Cameron was also asked by the programme if his wife was a secret weapon that would be deployed during the election campaign.

He said: "Well, she's one of those secret weapons that will be, have a pretty clear view of how she wants to be deployed."

Mrs Cameron is creative director of stationers Smythson and has kept a fairly low public profile since her husband became leader of the Conservative Party in 2005.

But Mr Cameron said earlier this week she had told him she was ready to help him on the general election campaign trail.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown's wife Sarah has adopted an increasingly high profile since he became PM, appearing on stage at the Labour Party conference two years running to introduce his big speech and attracting thousands of followers on social networking site Twitter.

Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg said his wife Miriam, mother of his three sons, would join him one day a week on the election campaign trail and that she may be willing to speak to the media herself.

He said: "She'll be keen to support me so you'll see a bit more of her."

He said that, while he and his wife were proud to talk about their children, they were also keen to keep them out of the political limelight as much as possible.

"But of course I accept that people want to know a bit more about the people who are putting themselves forward as prime ministers of this country, and their families too," he added.

Trevor McDonald meets David Cameron is on ITV1, Sunday 14 March at 2215 GMT.

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