Chris Ramsey: ‘I wouldn’t be married to Rosie if she wasn’t funny’

Chris and Rosie Ramsey talk about marriage, laughter, and the prospect of having their second child. Hannah Stephenson reports.

Rosie and Chris Ramsey have a popular podcast together.
Rosie and Chris Ramsey have a popular podcast together.

They’re like a married version of Ant & Dec, but with more swearing, constantly taking the mickey, ribbing each other about their foibles and bad habits, and making witty observations about everyday life and all it throws at them. Or maybe it’s just the accents.

Speaking to comedian Chris Ramsey and his presenter and social media star wife Rosie, you sense they just gel, finishing sentences for each other, firing merciless put-downs and, above all, laughing. There’s an underlying warmth that radiates, making them great company.

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Their millions of fans, who listen to their hilarious, award-winning podcast Sh**ged. Married. Annoyed. clearly think so too, and judging by the fact their book of the same name recently hit the top of the Sunday Times bestseller list, so do their readers.

Chris and Rosie Ramsey

But lockdown hasn’t been all laughter, the South Shields couple agree, with the live version of their podcast tour being postponed to next summer and Chris’ stand-up tour delayed to February.

“It’s been horrendous,” says the 34-year-old entertainer, who came fourth in Strictly Come Dancing, with professional dancer Karen Hauer, last year.

“I couldn’t get out of bed at the beginning [of lockdown]. My tour was supposed to start the day lockdown was announced, when I’d spent three months slogging my guts out writing. If it wasn’t for the podcast and the book, this year would have finished me financially.

“We’re sociable, we like to see our family and our friends. I like to tour. It was going to be a very busy year which just got taken from us. You can’t just constantly be ‘Cheshire cat’ grinning in the face of everything that’s happened.”

“It’s been hard,” Rosie agrees. “We’ve been lucky in that we’ve got a lovely garden, a decent-sized house, a child [they have a five-year-old son, Robin] and our health. But we have struggled.”

But they managed to keep each other’s spirits up. Rosie recalls: “If one of you has a bad day, the other one cheers them up and vice versa. When children are involved, you can’t fall apart in front of your child.”

The podcast, which has been running for 18 months, and the book, have been their salvation workwise. Chris has also done fill-in slots on The One Show.

The news during lockdown that Rosie, 34, is pregnant with their second child – due in January – also gave them both a real lift.

“I feel great. I didn’t get any sickness,” she starts, “- but she did nearly faint in a tile shop,” Chris finishes.

Rosie was anxious at the start of the pregnancy, having suffered a miscarriage in 2018. “We lost the last baby at 12 weeks, which is still an early loss, but we found out at the scan, so it was a shock and we weren’t expecting it. When we went for the 12-week scan with this baby, I said to Chris beforehand, ‘If this has gone wrong, we’ll have to deal with it.’

“It has been worrying, but now I’m at 20 weeks and have had my second scan, everything seems great. We’re just enjoying it now and finally getting excited.”

Chris reveals he wasn’t allowed into the 12-week scan for this baby, due to lockdown restrictions. “That was a horrible experience, because I knew how harrowing it was at the last one. I had to sit outside in the car. She texted a photo of the scan and I was just crying.”

They haven’t found out the sex of the new baby. “As far as we’re concerned, it’s a win-win, as long as it’s healthy,” says Chris. “There’s about 80% of me that’s desperate to know,” Rosie admits, “but it’s the best surprise you’ll ever get in your life.”

Family life has given Chris plenty of material for his stand-up comedy, he says. “When Rosie got married to me she knew anything funny or embarrassing that happened in our lives would be used in my stand-up, because that’s how we pay the bills. The only problem now is she’s getting her own back.

“Children weren’t in my plans until I met Rosie,” he continues. “But having a family has made my stand-up richer and has totally enriched my life.

“Marriage and fatherhood has completely changed me for the better. Until I met Rosie, I didn’t even know if I wanted to get married, I definitely didn’t want to have kids. We were engaged after six months, married a year later, and then had a child a year after that. Everything just clicked, and I can’t see my life without them.”

They recently bought a motorhome and Chris can’t believe his transformation, from being someone who hated caravans to happily sitting in the motorhome in the rain, playing games with Robin.

Like the podcast, the book looks at the ups and downs of life, relationships, families and dating, with plenty of toilet humour, sex horror stories, and observations about people’s behaviour in different situations – but it does lack romance. However, there is romance in their life, Chris insists.

“We are very affectionate, very cuddly kissy, but who the f*** wants to read about that? We know how much we love each other, but the podcast and the book are essentially a sparring match.

“When we were doing the audio book, Rosie mentioned she had said some really lovely things about me and that I did not reciprocate at all. I’m just always looking for laugh.”

“But what you don’t realise,” Rosie interjects, “is that in real life Chris is an absolute wet blanket, he’ll cry at anything.”

She confirms her husband is really romantic. “It’s not in huge big grand gestures, but if I’ve been a bit down I can guarantee I’ll get a lovely bunch of flowers and little things that he knows I like, like a bar of chocolate. Little things mean a lot.”

“She’s very easily pleased,” he quips.

As individuals, he is the big softie and the worrier, she is laidback, they agree. “Chris is a catastrophiser, so something will happen and I’ll be like, ‘Oh well, we’ll deal with that later’, but Chris will think of scenarios which he thinks could happen,” Rosie explains.

“Rosie helps by talking me down,” notes Chris. “And I know when I’m doing it now, which helps. And since we had our son, I don’t really let much keep me awake at night.”

Rosie has become as much of the star on the podcast as her comedian husband, but how does he feel about her getting a lot of the laughs?

“People think that because I’m a comedian I’m going to be precious about the fact people think my wife is as funny or, in many cases, funnier than me.

“But I wouldn’t be married to Rosie if she wasn’t funny, because it was one of the things I found so attractive about her in the first place.”

Sh**ged. Married. Annoyed. by Chris and Rosie Ramsey, is published by Michael Joseph, priced £16.99 hardback, £7.39 ebook. Available now.

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