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The Repair Shop's Jay Blades on fame, mistakes and mentoring Leigh-Anne Pinnock

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Welcome to Metro. co. uk‘s The Big Questions, where we ask, well, the big questions (and the smaller ones too) and this week, we’re diving deep with Jay Blades. The Repair Shop legend, also the host of Jay’s Yorkshire Workshop and Jay’s Home Fix, we should add, has seen a lot in his 52 years – and hasn’t been shy in talking about it.

From his battle with mental health to his relationship with his father, and his honesty around learning to read as an adult, Jay’s openness is fresh, and has made him a part of the fabric of British culture.

His memoir, Making It, has just been released on paperback, and in it Jay – or Jay Blades MBE, to you – opens up about challenges in his life, from growing up in Hackney, dealing with racism and hanging out with the wrong crowds, to becoming one of TV’s most recognisable faces. ‘I think it’s one of those things,’ he says. ‘I never anticipated that I would be writing a book and never anticipated that people would want to read it and it’d be successful. ’The presenter, who also mentored Little Mix’s Leigh-Anne Pinnock through the pitfalls of fame, is unbelievably frank and candid about the times when life didn’t go in his favour: he struggled with learning, being severely dyslexic, and spent time living on the streets.

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