As apocryphal stories go, the one which details a long-standing same-sex affair between former Blue Peter star Valerie Singleton and singer Joan Armatrading has been going around for decades.
For a time, it appears that tales of their ‘three-year affair’ would even appear on her Wikipedia page, while she’s been referred to in the past as a ‘lesbian icon’.
But Singleton, now 81, has now called for an end to such talk, and wants Armatrading herself to weigh in on it too.
“She must’ve heard of it. Why doesn’t she stand up and say it’s absolute rubbish?” she told the Mail on Sunday.
The rumour stemmed from the time in 1978 that Singleton interviewed Armatrading on Blue Peter, and were said to have ended up in bed together, before embarking on a lenghty relationship.
She added that it’s possible that the rumour could have affected her love life over the years.
“It might have done,” she went on. “How many people thought, ‘It’s not worth asking her out?’”
Singleton has previously broached the rumour, saying in an interview in 2008 that she in fact slept with a male member of Armatrading’s band.
She also revealed a relationship with fellow Blue Peter star Peter Purves. Asked why she did so, she added: “I was fed up with everybody thinking I was gay. So I thought, it’s time to put the record straight.
“I was fed up with looking at Wikipedia and finding I’ve lived with Joan Armatrading when I’ve only met the bloody woman twice. Ridiculous!”
When she revealed details of her love life in 2008, however, she says that she was then shunned by Blue Peter creator Biddy Baxter.
“Biddy has never sent me a Christmas card since then, to which I would say, ‘Have you spent 30 years being accused of being gay?’ Everybody goes, ‘Oh, she’s gay, isn’t she?’ No she’s not. Anything but,” she added.