Jonnie Irwin kept cancer diagnosis a secret to keep working and be treated normally
Watch: A Place In The Sun presenter Jonnie Irwin explains why he kept cancer diagnosis a secret
Jonnie Irwin has said he kept his cancer diagnosis a secret because he didn't want to lose work and didn't want people to treat him differently.
The A Place In The Sun presenter, 49, recently revealed to Hello! magazine that he has terminal cancer which has spread to his brain, and he was given six months to live by doctors.
He has since been opening up about his battle and in an interview with The Sun claimed that he was dropped by his Channel 4 property show after his diagnosis.
Read more: A Place In The Sun's Jonnie Irwin thanks fans for overwhelming support
The star was diagnosed in 2020 and, during an appearance on Good Morning Britain, explained why he kept his illness quiet.
"I was in fear of kind of what's happened to some extent," he said.
"When people find out you have got cancer... I know what I felt when I just heard the words, it's just this terrifying thing, the word cancer. And I thought, if I feel like that, everybody else will feel like that and lo and behold I lost some work through it.
"I wanted to keep it secret because professionally I didn't want to lose work but also socially and emotionally people treat you differently and people start making decisions for you."
"If I withheld that information, I found I could live a normal life right up until probably a year ago," he said.
Irwin - dad to son Rex, three, and two-year-old twins Rafa and Cormac with his wife Jess - said it become tougher to keep it a secret, with fans on social media saying he didn't look well.
The star said on GMB that he felt "massively aggrieved" about A Place In The Sun.
"When I was told I couldn’t do A Place In The Sun because they didn't think they could get insurance, it just broke my heart," he said.
"I just didn’t think they even fought for me.
"Not working on A Place In The Sun anymore, that affected my mental health. Being a TV presenter almost defines you and not being able to travel and not being able to provide for my family - every show I do now is money for my family in the future.”
Production company Freeform told Yahoo: "Jonnie has been a hugely important part of the A Place In The Sun family for over 18 years and all of us were deeply saddened by his diagnosis.
"Much loved by everyone on the production, no stone was left unturned in trying to enable Jonnie to continue his international filming with us during COVID but the production company were unable to secure adequate insurance cover for him.
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"Whilst we were unable to continue to film abroad with him, we’re delighted that he was able to remain as part of our team in the UK for exhibitions. We of course understand how frustrating this must be for him at this incredibly difficult time."
Yahoo has also contacted Channel 4.
Watch: Jonnie Irwin reveals 'devastating' terminal cancer diagnosis