Prime Minister Theresa May reveals what she’ll be doing on Christmas Day
Think goose, Doctor Who and Agatha Christie…
What will you be doing on Christmas Day, Prime Minister?
What I’ve been doing for the last nearly 20 years. A quick drink with friends in our village and then the churches in my Maidenhead constituency come together to put on a lunch and entertainment for older people who would otherwise be on their own. I have a drink and chat with them then go home and serve up my own meal.
Do you get somebody to cook Christmas dinner for you?
No! I always like to cook the Christmas meal myself. But it won’t be turkey. For a few years now we have tended to have goose instead.
There’s a tremendous amount of fat on a goose…
There is, but if you keep the fat, it makes wonderful roast potatoes for quite a long time thereafter.
Your father was a vicar. Is the religious side of Christmas important to you?
Yes. Throughout my life I have been going to Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve and church on Christmas Day morning. As a child I had to wait until my father had finished his services before I could open my presents.
That must have been hard for a little girl.
It felt like a very long wait. Others I knew would be able to open their presents first thing in the morning.
Did you watch your father take his Christmas services?
I did, from an early age. I’m an only child and my mother played the organ. So I would sit alongside her while my father was taking the service.
Does that memory tinge Christmas with sadness?
When you first lose your parents, Christmas is hugely, hugely important. Now I enjoy Christmas with my husband Philip and we keep up the tradition of going to church. But, of course, it does remind me of my parents.
If you could pick the TV schedule for Christmas night, what would you choose?
I always like to see Doctor Who on Christmas night, if possible, and a nice Agatha Christie to curl up with. David Suchet was a great Poirot – he got him to a T.
When you were young, did your parents let you watch much?
We could only get the BBC. Then, one day, my mother managed to jiggle the aerial and we got ITV and I saw Robin Hood. That music and Richard Greene as Robin Hood really grabbed me.
Any female TV role models?
I enjoyed watching The Avengers with Diana Rigg and then Joanna Lumley. But I don’t think I thought about it in those terms. I have never had a female role model – I’ve always just got on with doing what I am doing.
Do you and Philip snatch sofa suppers at Number 10?
I don’t tend to eat in front of the television. When we’re going to bed at home, I quite like listening to BBC Radio Berkshire.
Did you watch Ed Balls on Strictly Come Dancing?
I like watching Strictly but my Saturday evenings tend to be busy so I wasn’t really able to see Ed. Just snatches on the Sunday results programme.
Tempted, Prime Minister?
I can’t dance. It’s not a good idea.
Do you like European dramas?
I enjoyed Scandi dramas Borgen and The Bridge. Years ago I thought Das Boot was very evocative.
Do your advisers ever say, “Prime Minister, you really should watch this”?
My advisers don’t tell me what to watch on the television – I watch what I want to watch.
When you sat down to Christmas dinner last year, did you have any idea you would be doing it as Prime Minister this year?
Politics is an interesting business, things happen. In this case, obviously, they happened rather more quickly than people had expected. But no, I had no idea.