Ready Steady Cook host Rylan: I feared BBC would not take me seriously

The TV presenter first found fame after appearing on The X Factor.

Ready Steady Cook host Rylan Clark-Neal has said he feared the BBC would not take him seriously because of his background in reality TV.

Clark-Neal first found fame on The X Factor in 2012 and later appeared on Celebrity Big Brother.

The 31-year-old has since carved out a successful career as a TV presenter and will host the rebooted version of Ready Steady Cook on BBC One.

Rylan Clark-Neal
Rylan Clark-Neal will front the BBC’s rebooted version of Ready Steady Cook (Matt Crossick/PA Wire)

However Clark-Neal, who co-hosts Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two with Zoe Ball as well as fronting his own Radio 2 slot, says it is “weird” working on the BBC.

He said: “Because I never thought the BBC would look at me seriously, because of my perception of being someone who came from reality.”

Clark-Neal added: “I think the BBC has done a hell of a lot for me, without doing a lot. And it’s the same for them, because I think when I was on (Celebrity) MasterChef, it was quite a wildcard that I was on that show, and did so well on it.

“To do Radio 2, everyone was like ‘what?’ Now they’re like ‘Oh I listen to the show with your mum’ and hopefully it will be the same with Ready Steady Cook.”

The original Ready Steady Cook first aired in 1994 and over its 16-year run featured Ainsley Harriott and Fern Britton as hosts.

For the rebooted version, set to arrive on BBC One next month, Clark-Neal will be joined by chefs Mike Reid, Romy Gill, Akis Petretzikis, Ellis Barrie and Anna Haugh.

Clark-Neal, 31, admitted to being nervous about working with chefs.

He said: “I’d not met the five chefs and my biggest fear was I’ve worked with a few chefs in the past, they can be a bit tricky.

“That’s a lot of their auras sometimes; especially being in kitchens, it can get quite stressful.”

But any anxieties were soon put to rest when the new team  got together, Clark-Neal said.

Ready Steady Cook starts weekdays on BBC One on Monday March 2.

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