Former Blue Peter presenter Anthea Turner shared with the Daily Mail how she caught her husband cheating in the hope that it will help others:

Jetting off to spend the New Year in Mauritius at the end of 2012, I could not have been more deliriously happy. I was with the man I loved, my husband Grant Bovey, just the two of us on a romantic break at the hotel where we'd got engaged 12 years before.

Yes, we'd had our troubles. What couple hasn't? But when we stepped out on to the balcony where he had proposed, we spoke about renewing our vows and I allowed myself to believe we were going to grow old together.

Oh, how wrong I was.

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It was when we got back to Britain, and I began filming for the TV show Dancing On Ice, that I sensed something wasn't right. Grant's pattern of behaviour began to change.

I did an interview to help promote the show, saying how ecstatic I was to have my marriage back on track, and how happy Grant and I were.

Instead of sharing my happiness, he went ballistic, ranting and raving about discussing our private life. I couldn't understand where all this anger had come from.

I had my suspicions, but were they justified - or plain paranoia? There was only one way to find out. It was time to turn detective.

Anthea realised something was up when she was filming Dancing on Ice. Photo / Getty Images
Anthea realised something was up when she was filming Dancing on Ice. Photo / Getty Images

The first step was simple. Grant told me he was meeting a business contact at Shoreham airport, which in itself was unusual. So I went on to his computer to check his emails - but couldn't find any correspondence confirming the meeting. Odd, but not conclusive.

When he returned home, I checked his car's satnav but couldn't find the location in 'previous destinations' when I knew he would have had to use it to get there.

Perhaps there was an innocent explanation. But when I gently tried to quiz him, he told me the meeting had gone well and changed the subject. Over coming days, my suspicions grew.

Grant has always enjoyed cycling but all of a sudden, he began announcing plans to cycle to all sorts of strange places.

He has an electronic device on his bike which plugs into a home computer and logs routes and mileage, yet when I looked he hadn't been anywhere he claimed to have been.

If he was lying about his bike rides, what else could he be deceiving me about?

I had access to the anti-theft tracker device on our cars. Nervously, I checked their history... and again, they told me he was lying about where he was going.

As my car left for the airport, hers would arrive.

It was time to move things up a gear. I became a regular Miss Marple, logging on to the computer to check journeys he made, credit cards he'd used and text messages he'd sent.

Anthea Turner and ex-husband Grant Bovey. Photo / Getty Images
Anthea Turner and ex-husband Grant Bovey. Photo / Getty Images

Grant had no idea I could even do these things. As far as he was concerned, I was a technophobe, unable to carry out the simplest tasks on a computer.

He shouldn't have underestimated me. I hated being the sort of woman who checks up on her husband - I promise you I never, ever used to be - but, unfortunately, his behaviour turned me into her.

It didn't take long to collect my ammunition. Grant was seeing another woman.

Correction, he was seeing THE other woman - the one who had brought our marriage to the very brink months before. When I confronted him, there were no pleas for forgiveness. Not this time. He simply said he wanted a different life and didn't want to be married any more.

While he did try to come back a few months later, I knew it was time to call it a day. I'd given it my best shot. I'd given him the second chance I believe we all deserve in life. But on his part, it was all a big lie. He'd been in contact with his mistress all along.

We were heading for divorce.

At this point, some readers may be raising their eyebrows. After all, it is well documented that my relationship with Grant was founded on adultery. When we first got together, he was already married and a father to three lovely girls: I was married to former DJ and businessman Peter Powell. We divorced in 1998.

We didn't end our marriages lightly; ours was never simply a casual affair. But, inevitably, breaking up two homes had painful consequences. Many mistakes were made and people were hurt, something I've apologised for many times and something I would walk over broken glass to avoid happening ever again.

Even so, I never saw Grant's adultery coming. Call me naive, but infidelity had been last on my long list of scenarios to explain Grant's behaviour when his affair first began in 2012.

Anthea was devasted to find her husband was cheating after 12 years of marriage. Photo / Getty Images
Anthea was devasted to find her husband was cheating after 12 years of marriage. Photo / Getty Images

He had been staying overnight in London on the most implausible of pretexts, yet made me feel I was being unnecessarily suspicious when I questioned him - a horrible feeling that slowly destroys your self-confidence.

Unknown to me, the cracks in our marriage had begun to appear two years before, when Grant's property business came crashing down around his ears.

I'd taken a back seat to nurture our family, so when I got asked to screen test for Dinner Party Wars in Canada, I couldn't refuse. I flew to Toronto and got the job, which couldn't have come at a better time for us financially.

Whenever I flew home, life seemed normal, apart from the stress you'd expect when a business goes bust. Grant was my best friend and husband: it never occurred to me he would betray me. After all, we'd come through so much already.

Money troubles had already forced us to move from our lovely family home, where I once filmed Perfect Housewife, into a smaller house in Hascombe, Surrey. Because of our financial problems, we moved yet again, to a much smaller property in nearby Esher.

But while I was working, worrying and supporting him, it transpired he had been seen around town with a much younger woman. If anyone questioned her identity, he said she was his niece.

As my car left for the airport, hers would arrive. Behind my back, she was playing with my pets, staring at pictures of the girls and sleeping in my bed. You've got to be brazen to do that.


When someone is doing something wrong, they often seek to justify their actions by finding fault elsewhere. So it was that Grant had begun accusing me of all kinds of petty misdemeanours - from the amount of time I spent making Sunday lunch and my hatred for loud music in the house, to the fact I apparently didn't "party hard enough"...

Confused, I bit my tongue and tried to do better to make him happy.

I couldn't work out why this 52-year-old man was behaving so badly. He even bought a sports car and wanted to go to Ibiza. None of it made sense. Not until I learned the truth.

Anthea, Grant and their children. Photo / Getty Images
Anthea, Grant and their children. Photo / Getty Images

They often say the wife is the last to know but fortunately I wasn't quite last. The husband of one of my best friends, former GMTV weather presenter Sally Meen, knew what was going on. Sally managed to make him confess every detail - Grant was seeing a girl of 24, not much older than his eldest daughter.

Grant pleaded for forgiveness. He wrote letters and did everything he could to convince me he was truly sorry. He said I was the love of his life and he couldn't live without me. I loved him and desperately wanted to believe him - so I did.

By the time the London Olympics were drawing to a close, we were a couple again. Forgiveness was hard, but I felt our marriage was worth saving. Our 12th wedding anniversary that August could not have been more romantic. In December, I did everything to create a magical Christmas with the girls. I didn't see it at the time, but it was as if I was in some way taking the "blame" for his cheating.

Then came our trip to Mauritius, the start of Dancing On Ice... and the slow, sinking realisation I had been made a fool of again.

Ever since I accepted my husband was never going to be the man he'd promised he was, I've used every trick in the book to return to the confident, happy woman I used to be.

From wine to self-help books, shrinks to life coaches and friends, I've tried everything to feel healthy and strong once more - but I still couldn't find exactly what I was hoping for.

That book hadn't been written. So I decided to write it myself from everything I have learned and calling on experts to give their advice.

Hopefully this will go some way towards helping anyone who finds themselves in the same position.

Some of the advice is straightforward and practical - avoid the divorce courts if you possibly can; be realistic about your expectations; think long and hard about the impact on your children. And so on.

Other things are harder - to explain and to achieve.

Anthea is feeling much happier and healthier now. Photo / Getty Images
Anthea is feeling much happier and healthier now. Photo / Getty Images

Having spoken to friends and colleagues who've been through painful break-ups, we're probably all damaged in some way, big or small. But by the time you've reached the point in life that I have, you'll know the worst thing you can do to yourself is hold on to destructive emotions.

Even now, four years later, I can't say I am completely over the trauma. I have the odd "down day", but I've come to terms with being a divorcee. This was my second divorce and I can report that splitting up in your 50s is different from ending a marriage when you're much younger. Admitting you may be older, but are not necessarily wiser, makes it more painful to face the world alone again.

It's taken four long years to recover my inner strength.

In the immediate fallout from my separation from Grant, the optimism I had in my earlier decades had disappeared. I found myself dreading the future, fearing I was past my best with nothing to offer.

I'm glad to say I was wrong. Nearly four years on from that sad day, I'm in a healthier, more optimistic frame of mind, but it has taken every hour of every one of those years and a serious amount of hard work to rediscover my independence, confidence and inner strength.

Only now do I feel I've returned to the person I am and feel somewhat shocked when I recollect a woman I don't recognise; a woman who had become a co-dependent, people-pleasing wreck, sacrificing her own independent mind through fear of loneliness and of losing everything she'd invested her love in.

A woman who was so intent on keeping the family unit together, to the point of forgiving her husband his infidelity, that she totally forgot herself.