ENTERTAINMENT

Zoe Ball Returns To BBC Radio 2 Show And Pays Touching Tribute To Late Boyfriend Billy Yates

She also thanked her listeners for all of their support.

04/06/2017 14:06

Zoe Ball paid a touching tribute to her late boyfriend Billy Yates as she returned to her BBC Radio 2 show on Saturday (3 June). 

The DJ has been absent from her afternoon slot while grieving for cameraman Billy, who took his own life last month.

As she took to the airwaves for the first time in four weeks, Zoe thanked listeners for all their support. 

“So glad to be back here at Radio 2 - if a little wobbly - bear with me today,” she said. 

PA Archive/PA Images
Zoe Ball has returned to her Radio 2 show

“As most of you know I’ve been away for the past four weeks - been a pretty tough time actually, having lost my dear, dear boyfriend, Billy. 

‘”I would really like to thank the ever-gorgeous ladies Kate Thornton, Suzi Perry and Melanie C, for holding the fort so brilliantly whilst I was away, everyone at the BBC and all my friends for all their support and Billy’s dear family, his brilliant friends, [and] my family.”

She continued: “I would really like to thank you, the listeners, for all your kind thoughts and for reaching out with love. Especially many of you who’ve experienced your own loss and grief in similar circumstances. 

“Your messages have meant the world to us all, so, I send you all love from the bottom of my heart.”

She then dedicated a song to Billy, playing soul track ‘Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)’ by Frank Wilson.

Explaining her choice, Zoe said: “Billy was a truly special chap, and the things he loved to do, he loved to make everybody laugh, he loved to love and he loved to dance.

“So Billy Will Yates-face, this one is for you angel.”

The 40-year-old ‘Antiques Roadshow’ cameraman was found dead at his home in Putney, South London on 4 May.

The presenter is thought to have begun dating Billy following her split from her husband of 17 years Norman Cook - better known as DJ and music producer Fatboy Slim - in 2016.

Reports first surfaced about the romance in February, after the two were photographed together in London.

RIP: Stars We've Lost In 2017
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