Jonnie Irwin ‘not telling kids it’s his last Christmas’ after cancer diagnosis

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    A Place in the Sun's Jonnie Irwin and his wife Jess Irwin have decided against telling their children it will be their last family Christmas following his terminal cancer diagnosis.

    The Channel 4 star, 49, was diagnosed with with lung cancer in 2020 and has been given months to live as the cancer has now spread to his brain.

    The TV presenter has been married to Jess since 2016 and they share three boys together – Rex, three, and two-year-old twins Rafa and Cormac.

    READ MORE: A Place In The Sun's Jonnie Irwin jokes he's 'given in' as he shares festive family snaps

    The couple made the decision not to tell their sons about his battle with the disease because: "Why break their hearts when they're having such fun?"

    When asked if his children understand what he is going through, Jonnie told the Daily Mail: "Not yet. When I'm more frail or in bed for days we might.

    “If you have 20 days left, why spend them in mourning and confusion? Why not just have 15 days of pure, blissful ignorance and five days of knowing the facts?

    “I'm not looking forward to the chat with Rex. We're still thinking about it. I've learnt that it's best to do nothing if you're unsure.”

    Jonnie, who was a keen rugby player until he broke his back, and his wife are focused on creating memories with their boys, with exciting trips to Peppa Pig World and Legoland planned.

    Speaking about his terminal diagnosis, he said: "I've been told I've got months to live. We're hurtling towards where we don't want to be.

    “I've had a big dose of reality. I'm not going to beat this. People say, 'Don't worry. You will.' Well I probably won't, mate.”

    Jess, 40, admitted she is scared of what will come after Jonnie passes but explained she will have no choice but to cope for the sake of her children.

    "It scares me, the sadness coming my way. Everyone says, 'You'll manage. You'll be surprised.' I've never had dark thoughts for myself but I wonder now: 'How will I cope with the sadness?' I know I'll have to, for the boys. I'll have to put a smile on my face. But it worries me, the great grief that will hit me," the mum-of-three said.

    Jonnie, who is one of the show's longest-running presenters, revealed he wants Jess to find happiness after he is gone and hopes she finds "a good bloke" to look after her and their boys.

    "I want Jess to be happy when I'm not here," he explained.

    The Escape to the Country star added: "I don't want her to be on her own. My most selfless decision is to wish her well for the rest of her life. If that is with someone else, then so be it. If she finds a good bloke to look after her and the boys, that would be great."


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    • A Place In The Sun

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