Stephen Mulhern admits to hiding from Roy Walker over 'Catchphrase' awkwardness

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(ITV)
(ITV)

It’s always going to be an awkward moment running into the person you’ve replaced on one of TV’s longest-running gameshows.

But when Stephen Mulhern bagged the Catchphrase job and spotted previous host Roy Walker in the street, he hid behind a car rather than talk to him.

Mulhern was a guest on Good Morning Britain, where he admitted that he’d been worried about taking over from original host Walker after such a long stretch on the gameshow.

He said: “Catchphrase has been going for 30 years and Roy Walker did 17 of them.

“When I found out I’d got the job of being the new presenter, I said, ‘has anyone told Roy Walker?’.

“Then I saw him walking up The Strand one day and I didn’t know what to say to him, so I hid behind a car.”

Walker hosted the show from 1986 until 1999, and it was revamped for short stints under two other presenters – Nick Weir and Mark Curry – before Mulhern took over in 2013.

There were other awkward confessions in Mulhern’s interview, as GMB host Piers Morgan revealed that he had predicted Mulhern’s career would go nowhere when they were both on Britain’s Got Talent – Morgan as a judge, and Mulhern as the spin-off show host.

Morgan said: “You said you wanted to be in the bigtime, and I said, ‘you’re never going to make it, you’re the guy who comes on at half past 12’.

“Now I turn on my TV and there you are on primetime, gurning away.

“I saw you on Celebrity Catchphrase and you weren’t as annoying as I remembered.”

But Mulhern hit back at him, saying of their time on Britain’s Got Talent: “People thought you were my dad.”

Mulhern also added that he’d been in touch with Ant McPartlin ahead of his return to TV for Britain’s Got Talent and confirmed: “He’s doing well.”


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