Chris Tarrant says he spent the first decade of his telly career ‘sinking pints’

Chris Tarrant spent the first decade of his telly career trolleyed.

The TV host, 75, who presented the legendary kids’ show Tiswas from 1974 to 1981, said he’d start his day with a string of “livener” pints from 10.30am.

He makes the admission in his new memoir, It’s Not A Proper Job when talking about landing his breakthrough presenting role on the Birmingham-based show ATV Today.

Dad-of-four Chris – infamously slapped with a 12-month drink-driving ban in 2018 – said: “On the day I began, I met a lovely guy called John Swallow.

His idea of showing me the ropes was to go to The Crown pub.

"It was just after half 10 and my new boss was pouring pints down my neck.

“This became the normal pattern for most of the next 10 years. We would take what we always referred to as the ‘livener’, then start our day.

“We would almost certainly have a couple more at lunchtime and then there was the Green Room – open during transmission.”

Chris, who also hosted Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? – moaned the “real alcohol culture” in telly is now dead.

The broadcaster hosted Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? from 1998 to 2014.

Only five contestants won the total cash prize of £1million during his time on the famed ITV quiz show.

The presenter recorded a whopping 592 episodes for the notoriously-tough game show, and even provided his vocal talents for games based on the programme.

His other TV projects have included Christ Tarrant: Extreme Railways, a Channel 5 travel show which he started hosting in 2012.

He also ran the decks on Capital Radio host between 1984 and 2004, where he presented the highly-popular early-morning show, Capital Breakfast.

Tarrant was awarded an OBE in 2004 for his charity work.

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