Jan Moir: Boys beware. Predatory women (like Caroline Flack) are on the prowl

Boys beware. Predatory women (like Caroline Flack) are on the prowl

Teenage kicks: TV presenter Caroline Flack

Teenage kicks: TV presenter Caroline Flack

No doubt about it. Caroline Flack is a babe. Lots of men are attracted to her. Particularly when she poses in her leopard-print body-stocking and opaque tights, like Miss January in a bargain basement Rank starlet calendar from 1962.

Luvvly jubbly. As they no doubt say.

In reality, she is a seasoned presenter of the fluffiest of fluff shows. At the moment, she co-hosts ITV2’s The Xtra Factor.

She is also dating a pop star. Well, why not Caroline meets pop stars all day, every day.

She practically has to wade through a thicket of the blighters to get to work. So she knows the terrain well.

A previous relationship, with the Holloways’ drummer, Dave Danger, ended after three years. Indeed, Prince Harry was one of those said to have comforted Caroline after the break up. She has no shortage of well-placed admirers.

So well done, Harry. Good to know that HRH’s caring doesn’t stop with his charity work. Or should that be his charity doesn’t stop with his caring We digress.

The important thing is Caroline has dried her tears and moved on to fresh romantic pastures. With the emphasis on fresh.

For her current beau happens to be Harry Styles from One Direction. Yes, that Harry. In the dolly mixtures boyband line up, wee Harry — with his mop of chocolate curls and his river deep dimples — just happens to be the dolliest of the lot.

Babe: Caroline Flack

Babe: Caroline Flack “looks like Miss January in a bargain basement calendar in her leopard print body-stocking

He’s adorable. He’s so cute. He looks like he should be wearing green velvet and scampering next to Santa in aChristmas grotto, feeding carrots to the reindeer.

However, there is one slight problem with the Caroline/Harry burgeoning relationship. One teensy hitch. And that is their ages. For Caroline is 32, while Harry is only 17. Basically, he is still a child.

No wonder people find their liaison inappropriate. Even slightly creepy.

And I have to admit I am one of them. The pair have not fully admitted they are an item, but denials are noticeable by their absence.

And, recently, a whey-faced Harry was spotted early one morning, leaving Caroline’s London home after a sleepover.

Yesterday, on ITV’s Daybreak show, Miss Flack blushed and giggled when questioned about her romance. ‘He’s really nice and we have a lot of fun together, so what’s wrong with that’

She added: ‘He’s a lot younger than me, which some people say is a bit strange.’

That’s because it is a bit strange!

I’m sorry, but it is. And I don’t imagine his mother is best pleased with these rather off-key romantic developments with a predatory older woman, either.

Age ain Age ain

Age ain”t nothing but a number: Caroline Flack, 32, has defended the age gap between her and 17-year-old Harry Styles who is still, Moir writes “a child”

Yet, in a magazine interview, Caroline still blathered on that no one is getting hurt, so why did people think it was wrong or bad Does someone really have to tell her

Of course, in showbiz, different rules apply to the ones mere mortals have to live by. Glamour — or the perception of glamour — has a habit of blurring the moral edges. Of sprinkling stardust over a situation that would be considered more than a bit whiffy on Civvy Street.

Like Bill Wyman dating Mandy Smith, 14. Then marrying her four years later, despite their 34-year age gap.

Whatever Caroline may say about nothing being amiss with her toyboy romance, the truth is that there would be problems with the relationship in almost every other sphere or workplace.

There is one slight problem with the Caroline/Harry burgeoning relationship. One teensy hitch. And that is their ages. For Caroline is 32, while Harry is only 17. Basically, he isstill a child.

In an office environment, for example, she would almost certainly be suspected of some kind of harassment.

Or of using her rank for sexual gratification, at the very least. If she was his teacher, which she could well be, she might lose her job for forming an inappropriate relationship with a pupil.

And if the sexes were reversed and a male 32-year-old showbiz host started dating a 17-year-old girlband wannabe, he would be the subject of much public disapprobation.

And rightly so. Remember, Harry is still a child. And a boy child at that; little critters who tend to be much more immature than girls of the same age.

Whatever his cool dude surface appearance may suggest, he is a seething, hormonal spaghetti of emotions; a sexualised youngster who finds himself having to deal with the overwhelming experience of fame, plus the complications of being entangled with a much older woman.

For her part, Caroline is the classic me-first cougar, one who seems to be more alarmed by the Twitter death threats from the mad boyband fans — ignore them, take it from one who knows — than the moral equivalence of what she is doing.

The sophisticated, adult thought that things can feel right yet still be wrong never seems to cross Caroline’s mind.

Of course, X Factor alumna Rebecca Ferguson also dated a member of the same group when she was 24 and he 18. Somehow, that doesn’t seem quite so bad.

With Caroline — older, more experienced, tougher — there seems to be a disquieting hint of an opportunity seized, a trophy bagged. Clearly, she revels in the warped kudos of being the woman who bagged the hot guy that millions of teen fans are screaming about.

And it was not entirely edifying to see a boy of 17 doing the walk of shame as he left the home of a woman in her 30s.

Caroline Flack’s breathy excuses about age differences and being soulmates is only so much hot air. To be frank, she seems to have about as much sense as a pot plant.

But here is the thing about Caroline and Harry and their unsettling romance. It is not the age gap that is so disquieting, it is the age.


In March, the Coronation Street musical Street Of Dreams will open in Manchester. I’m booking my seats as we speak.

For not only will the show be narrated by Paul O’Grady, many of the old characters will also be appearing in the singing and dancing extravaganza.

Not least of all Julie Goodyear, who will reprise her role as Bet Lynch — and sing a song called Nowt A Bit of Lippy Couldn’t Solve.

It’s not exactly true. Lippy didn’t solve any of Bet’s problems. Or those of hundreds of other Corrie tragediennes. But it’s still a cheering sentiment.


You”re a little saucepot Nigella, don”t deny it

Was it my imagination or was it just last year that Nigella Lawson claimed that she didn’t want to be seen as ‘some blow-up sex doll in the kitchen’

If that is the Nige’s true ambition, she could try a bit harder. For this week, the nation’s favourite oven-ready sex pest took it upon herself to pose for Stylist magazine with salted, caramel sauce dripping down her face.

The polite description of her expression could only be ‘wet rapture’. And I don’t mean a labrador shaking itself after a splash in the village pond. I particularly like the sweet little caramel tear dripping from her left eye.

But what are we to make of this sticky photograph of the domestic goddess Absolutely nothing, you filthy-minded perverts.

Saucepot: Nigella Lawson in a kitchen - her favourite place

Saucepot: Nigella Lawson in a kitchen – her favourite place

For Nigella says the image is not meant to be neither erotic nor sexual. And for good measure, she claims she has never used a double entendre in her life. Well, not deliberately at any rate.

Well, excuse me while I snort with laughter into my glass of Flirtini (Nigella recipe included in Stylist) and duck once from the non-stop barrage of culinary filth she has hosed the country down with for years.

‘Mmm, I like it when it starts bubbling,’ she is wont to coo over some innocent pot of stew.

‘Mmm, I like it when it starts bubbling,’ she is wont to coo over some innocent pot of stew.

We all know that when Nigella is let loose in the television kitchen, no parsnip is safe from a fondle or a lingering look. No chipolata can expect to escape unmolested.

In her Christmas shows, she squirts a suggestive pyramid of aerosol cream on to mince pies — titter ye not — and wolfs them down in a manner that can only be described as burlesque.

She can barely get her cupcakes out without everyone shouting phwoaar and fanning themselves with her recipe for Boy Bait.

Naughty Nigella has been the driving force behind this orgy of innuendo for years.

It is a bit too late for the saucepot to start complaining now.


All white on the night No, Cherie Lady in white: Cherie Blair

Lady in white: Cherie Blair

At an evening event in London this week, Cherie Blair turned up wearing her white pixie boots (right).

Yes, those white pixie-boots! The very ones she wore when tripping around Chelsea Flower Show, with her then lifestyle adviser Carole Caplin in a matching pair, way back in 2003.

How amazing that Cherie has kept these ghastly boots through thick and thin, pestilence and plague, good times and bad. Just waiting for the opportunity to pull them out and pop them on again.

Some women are hoarders. And some are just insane.

Cherie needs to understand that white winkle-pickers are never, ever coming back.

Not that they were ever fashionable or covetable in the first place.

In fact, here’s a bit of free fash advice from moi.

White pixie-boots are only acceptable footwear if you happen to be Alvin Stardust starring as the Elf of Snow in a Christmas panto called Rockin’ Winter Ice-capades. For everyone else, it’s a no.

You’re welcome.


If only Louis could join the singalong

The X Factor ends not with a bang but a whimper tomorrow night. With a paucity of big names prepared to duet with the finalists, the judges themselves have had to step into the breach.

Gary Barlow will sing the Billy Joel classic Always a Woman with Marcus. Tulisa Contostavlos has promised to become a ‘member of Little Mix’ on the night. Gawd, must she And Kelly Rowland will have to stop sulking long enough to sing River Deep with Amelia. My ears are already quaking at the thought of it all.

What a shame Louis Walsh has no acts in the final. The only thing that could save this series is Louis getting up there to belt out Islands In The Stream with former act Johnny Robinson. Then duetting on Fairytale of

New York with Kitty Brucknell for the seasonal finale. Followed by a singalong with last year’s oddball Wagner to What A Swell Party This Is.

You know. Louis has always reminded me of a little Val Doonican. Now is his chance to prove it.


A cut above… Youthful and terrific: Jane Fonda

Youthful and terrific: Jane Fonda

Good heavens, Jane Fonda is one indefatigable old broad. On U.S. television this week, the 73-year-old climbed back into the red and black leotard she first wore to go for the burn nearly 30 years ago.

It fitted her like a dream. Of course it did. Gah! The only thing I can still climb into that was the same size three decades ago is a London taxi.

Jane says that diet, exercise and being a millionairess who can afford massages and treatments is what keeps her looking young.

Too right, darling. But it is something else, too. Having a fantastic hairdresser. I don’t know who cuts Jane’s hair — or even if it is her own hair — but it does look youthful and terrific.