Arm in arm, the BBC lovebirds: Kamal Ahmed and Sophie Long go public with their budding romance

Glamorous BBC girl Sophie Long’s affair with fellow married newsreader Tim Willcox fizzled out, but she appears to have found lasting love with another Corporation staffer, Kamal Ahmed.

Since I disclosed in February that Sophie, 38, had fallen for BBC Economics Editor Kamal, 48, their romance has been going from strength to strength.

The couple are pictured together for the first time after dining at The Wolseley, a fashionable restaurant in London’s St James’s, known as a favourite of captains of industry.

BBC Economics Editor Kamal Ahmed and presenter Sophie Long (both pictured) were seen after dining at the Wolseley, a fashionable restaurant in London’s St James’s

Glamorous BBC girl Long’s affair with fellow married newsreader Tim Willcox (both pictured) fizzled out

‘They are serious about each other,’ says one of their friends. Wrapped up in matching navy overcoats and colourful scarves, the pair headed arm in arm towards the BBC’s headquarters nearby.

Kamal split last year from his wife, the pulchritudinous writer Elizabeth Day.

Torquay-born Sophie and Tim, her 52-year-old co-presenter on the BBC News Channel (left), were both married when they embarked on their relationship. Sophie’s husband was Will Green, 40, her childhood sweetheart.

Tim, a former member of the British Youth Orchestra, had even serenaded the newlyweds on the trumpet at their wedding in 2010. 


Bond star Craig's exhausted, says Judi Dench

Since reports that Daniel Craig was to step down as James Bond appeared last week, the film-makers have refused to say a word about his future.

Now, however, Craig’s former spy chief, Dame Judi Dench, has come out of the shadows.

The 81-year-old actress, who played M opposite Craig three times, says he’s been left shattered by the all-action films. ‘I should think he is exhausted, absolutely exhausted,’ she tells me over a glass of champagne at the Chelsea Flower Show.

Judi Dench, who played M opposite Daniel Craig (pictured, in Skyfall) in three James Bond films, says the actor is shattered by the 007 role

Craig, 48, admitted last year that he’d had enough after starring in four 007 films and joked that he would ‘rather slash my wrists’ than reprise the role.

The actor, who netted a reported total of £38 million for the four he’s appeared in, said that if he did return it would be just for the money.

‘Who do I see as the next Bond?’ says Dame Judi, who starred in seven 007 films until her character was killed in Skyfall.

‘I don’t know really. It’s nothing to do with me, it’s up to [producers] Barbara Broccoli and Michael Wilson!’


Cameron chum hit by peasants' revolt 

With his pledge to respect the ‘sensitivity’ of the place, Nicholas Johnston was welcomed as the new owner of the picture-postcard Devon village of Bantham when he bought it for more than £11.5 million.

Sadly, I hear that 18 months later the Eton schoolmate of David Cameron is at war with locals over his plans to cash in on the 728-acre estate, which includes a beach, shop, golf course and around 20 homes.

Johnston — who also owns the Great Tew estate in Oxfordshire, where he hosts the Chipping Norton set’s annual Cornbury ‘Poshstock’ music festival — has been forced to shelve plans to scrap free parking along lanes near the beach after more than 150 complaints.

One resident called the changes a ‘stab in the back’ that showed Johnston’s ‘contempt’ for locals. Another said the proposals were ‘nothing more than a thinly veiled money-making enterprise’.

Forget the EU referendum campaign, perhaps Cameron should head to Devon to play peace-maker?


Volte Face of the week

She is hailed as a role model for how women can age naturally, but Dame Kristin Scott Thomas has admitted all is not quite as it seems.

The 56-year-old star of The English Patient, right, confesses that she had regular Botox injections. ‘I don’t want to look in the mirror and not recognise myself. On the other hand, Botox is great!’ Kristin declares. ‘A few years ago I did it every summer on my frown lines.’

The 56-year-old star of The English Patient Dame Kristin Scott Thomas (pictured) has confessed that she has had regular Botox injections

The actress had previously voiced her concerns about such procedures. She is even said to have sacked a publicist who suggested she have cosmetic treatment to get rid of the bags under her eyes. 

However, in a further blow to fans of her ‘natural’ look, Kristin now says she would consider going under the knife if it could take ‘ten or 20 years off my age’.

She tells Paris Match: ‘I’m not against aesthetic procedures; the only thing I cannot stand is the standardisation, physical stereotypes. That said, if a facelift actually takes ten or 20 years off my age, I’ll buy it!’


Fledging model Lottie Moss appears to share her half-sister Kate’s knack for making money.

Though only 18 and still at school, the inaugural accounts for the company into which she channels her earnings, LottieM Ltd, show she had £46,000 flowing in during the year to August 2015. 

She can look forward to her income soaring as she’s since appeared on the cover of Vogue and won modelling jobs for Valentino and Calvin Klein. 

Lottie has a long way to go, though, before she reaches Kate’s £50 million fortune. Then again, Kate, 42, is the muse of billionaire Topshop spiv Sir Philip Green.

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