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With a net worth estimated at £3.9 million, you’d think Gregg Wallace would be happy to slow down a bit and enjoy the fruits of his labour. However, speaking on White Wine Question Time, the Masterchef star revealed his fear of being poor keeps him working.
“I just want financial security,” he explained to host Kate Thornton.
“Unless I'm working all this time, I just don't feel like I'm working hard enough. I'm a security addict – that's why I carry on working.”
Wallace, who had previous companies that went into administration, said it’s something that stems from his past.
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“I've chatted to the therapist about this,” he revealed.
“There are two things. One is going from a nice big house and flash cars to nothing. And the other one is how poor I was starting up – and both of those things are what haunts me and that's what drives me on.”
Wallace says his wife of four years, Anna, doesn’t share his view and would be happy if he worked less, so they could have more time together, but he says that won’t be happening in the near future.
“I'm just terrified of poverty – absolutely terrified,” he confessed.
This terror struck hard at the beginning of lockdown in March, when the former greengrocer, saw his work drying up.
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“I flew into a bit of a panic and was suffering real anxiety, so much so that I had like anxiety rashes coming out on my legs,” he told Thornton.
He continued: “I've always worked – to not be able to work set me into a blind panic. However, when I realised, I had enough money to last me until a good 10 months, I started to relax and then bits of work started coming in and then I really got in the swing of it and really, really enjoyed it.
“I loved it. I've got a baby boy. My eldest daughter's here. My in-laws are here. I've got two little dogs and a little bit of land and I had such a nice time.”
The star, who says he doesn’t want yachts or fancy holiday homes, admits he’s not quite ready to give up work just yet.
“I look forward to taking it a little bit easier,” he said. “I just don't feel like I've got enough money to relax yet.”
During lockdown, after going on a health kick, Wallace created his own subscription service to help others do the same, with wife Anna and his daughter Libby helping him to run it.
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