'He's My Anchor, My True Love': Dawn French says 'remarkable' new man is a gift who has given her a new lease of life at 55 (despite her creaky knees)
19:26 GMT, 1 November 2012
Her split from Lenny Henry laid her low for many months. But now, as Dawn French celebrates the launch of a new book, she has spoken out about the 'remarkable' man who has given her a new lease of life.
French, who divorced from Henry in 2010, met 49-year-old charity executive Mark Bignell when he took over her mother's job running Devon drugs and alcohol charity Hamoaze House seven years ago. Her mother Roma introduced them – but never expected them to fall in love.
When the 55-year-old comedienne's mother died earlier this year, the two had begun dating – and French says the news thrilled her mother.
As Dawn French celebrates the launch of a new book she has talked about the new man in her life
'She was absolutely delighted that we were together,' French said in an interview with Woman & Home magazine. 'And a bit shocked. But that massive approval just before she died this year was lovely and very touching.'
Dawn, who has a 21-year-old daughter, Billie, with Henry, says dedicating her new book, Oh Dear Silva, to Mark Biggs, whom she calls Biggy, was a 'big step' towards going public with their relationship.
The comedienne. who posed in glittering party dresses for the December issue of Woman & Home, has dedicated her new book, Oh Dear Silva, to Mark Biggs
'I call him 'My Anchor My True Love', and those words really say the things he’s given me,' she says.
think it’s very hard to be an anchor for me because I’m independent and
I think I know what’s best for me. But quite gently and carefully,
Biggs has supported me enormously and I’ve suddenly realised what an
enormous gift that is.
'I feel like I'm at the most remarkable stage of my life,' she goes on.
'I'm 55 and finding so many new things opening up for me – new experiences, new opportunities and new love.
'Other than my memory being a bit woolly and my knees being a bit creaky, I don't really think there's anything I can't do.'
Dawn and Mark were pictured kissing goodbye in Plymouth this month (left), he is her first serious boyfriend since she split from comedian Lenny Henry (right)
But despite finding new love, Dawn is careful not to denigrate the years she spent with Henry.
'I do want to stress, though, that
I have absolutely no regrets about my amazing, long marriage to Lenny. But this
is an entirely different thing. It’s a separate chapter of my life – a new
'Divorce is not easy, but if you genuinely put your kids first, that dictates the civility you should show each other.
'What example are you otherwise'
Read the interview in full in the December issue of Woman & Home magazine
To read the Dawn French interview in full, see the December issue of Woman & Home out today.
Please visit www.womanandhome.com