Blind Date contestant who turned down Amanda Holden says she was ‘too dramatic’

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A Blind Date contestant told how he has been teased for 30 years – for turning down Amanda Holden on prime time telly.

The Britain’s Good Talent beauty was one of three girls Barnaby Hands could have picked to join him on a mini-break in Bath on Cilla Black’s match-up show.

But he found her "too dramatic" – and picked a student nurse called Sam instead.

Amanda, 50, went on to star in TV series Wild At Heart, The Grimleys, Kiss Me Kate and Cutting It, play the lead in stage show Thoroughly Modern Millie and present This Morning and I Can See Your Voice.

Barnaby, now an executive at film giant Paramount, said he has been taunted over his TV pick ever since.

“I still get teased about it to this day,’’ he said.

“When she became famous everyone kept telling me, `You idiot!’

“My brother used to tease me so much.

“He said, `I can’t believe you turned down Amanda Holden.

“She used to do some modelling in men’s magazines and he would phone me up and say, `What were you thinking?’’’

As a 20-year-old student in Manchester in 1991 Barnaby auditioned for the dating show `for a laugh’ after a boozing session with pals.

Barnaby, 50, said though he found Amanda genuinely funny ’she was too dramatic for me’.

“If we were going to go on a date together I didn’t want too much drama,“ he added.

When he first set eyes on the drama student he felt so awkward’ because she was stunning’.

“I got a chance after the show to say to Amanda that I was sorry,“ he said.

“She said: `Don’t worry about it’. But I didn’t see her again.

“I remember watching it back at the time and thinking Amanda had a real star quality.

“She spoke about how she really liked older men like Jack Nicholson and I remember thinking to myself, `If that’s your ideal date, oh s***’.

“I’m not surprised in the slightest that she’s a star – the way she expressed herself in front of the camera and her big personality.“

He added: “I feel a little bit for her that her appearance on this show has followed her around to this day.

“Even now people text me and say they’ve seen the clip on YouTube.“

Though romance did not blossom for Barnaby on his TV date he admitted his wife of 17 years Becca – with whom he has two teen daughters – bears a similarity to Amanda.

“They are both quite petite,“ he said.

“Becca’s a natural beauty.

“I wouldn’t change a thing.“

Amanda later confessed she had been engaged when she went on Blind Date.

  • Amanda Holden

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