Grieving Phil Spencer puts on a brave face as he smiles on set with Kirstie Allsopp as he returns to work after both his parents died in a car crash
Grieving Phil Spencer put on a brave face as he smiled on set while filming alongside Kirstie Allsopp on Tuesday after returning to work following the tragic death of his beloved parents.
The presenter, 53, revealed last month that his father David, 89, and mother Anne, 82, had died in an accident on their family farm in Littlebourne, near Canterbury, Kent, while on their way to the pub for lunch.
Kirstie took to Instagram to share a behind-the-scenes sneak peek after Phil returned to work last week.
Kirstie uploaded a few photos of them doing their make-up so they were camera ready: ‘Back to work and a special treat, we have make-up. We don’t normally have glam help on @c4locationsofficial or @loveitorlistituk, but when Phil and I do studio work (which usually means being with me) we do.”
Fans took to the comments section to say how good it was to see that a grieving Phil had people around him to put a smile on his face.
Supported: Phil Spencer smiled on set as he filmed with Kirstie Allsopp on Tuesday, after returning to work following the tragic death of his beloved parents
Back to work: Phil returned to work last week, while Kirstie took to Instagram to share a behind-the-scenes sneak peek
Heartbreaking: Phil’s parents, David, 89, and Anne, 82, both died last month after their car drove over a bridge and ended up upside down in a river
Fans wrote: ‘You always look beautiful, bare faced or made up. Give Phil a hug for me.”
‘I think Phil would like to get back to business as usual with you. Time to boss him around again. He will know that you (and we) care about him and his family.”
“Never stop being nice to Phil!” and “Aww, please promise to be nice to Phil forever.”
Phil was seen for the first time since their deaths in a video shared by his co-host Kirstie Allsopp last Tuesday, as she revealed the pair were back on set of their much-loved property show.
Kirstie started the video by explaining: ‘So we’re back to work filming on Location, Location, Location and I wasn’t quite sure what my next post on Instagram should be.
‘My last message was about Phil’s mum and dad and you all sent such lovely, sweet messages and Phil was so grateful…’, prompting Phil to interrupt and confirm: ‘Very grateful, and I haven’t put anything on Instagram, but I do appreciate people’s sweet reactions.’
Kirsty added: “You see, he’s English and he’s a man, he’s just done really well, so a round of applause to Phil for that and thank you, you’ve all been so kind.”
She captioned the clip: “He is back at work and was very touched by all your messages. I even managed to get him to say it on Insta. Bless him.’
‘Give Phil a hug from me’: Fans took to the comments section to say how good it was to see a grieving Phil have people around him who put a smile on his face
Last week, despite the recent heartbreak that took place at Garrington Farm, Kirstie revealed that Phil’s family are still getting on with their lives as best they can.
She told the BBC Newscast podcast: ‘(Phil’s) got a lovely, lovely family and they’re very, very close and they’re all together.
‘Actually his sister got married yesterday, they went ahead with that and today they’re all going to the pub for lunch. The same pub his parents went to when they died.
“He’s very stoic and pragmatic, and he believes it was right for his parents to go together.”
Flowers have been left at the remote spot of Phil’s parents, who were both killed after their car drove over a bridge and ended up upside down in a river.
Despite the efforts of paramedics and Phil’s brother Robert, who fought to save his parents’ lives by cutting their seat belts with a pocket knife and pulling them from the river, the elderly couple could not be revived.
Anne, who was cleared to drive after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, is said to have been behind the wheel at the time.
Her husband was in the front passenger seat and a live-in caregiver – a nurse from the agency – was in the backseat and managed to climb out of the car through a window and call for help.
Despite the devastating news, Phil said in the Instagram post announcing his parents’ death that he and his entire family are happy they were together in the end.
He wrote: ‘Very sad, both of my wonderful parents passed away on Friday.
“As a family, we are all trying to hold on to the fact that Mom and Dad went together and that neither will ever have to grieve the loss of the other. Which in itself is a blessing.
‘Although they had both been in extremely good shape the days before (hence the sudden idea to go out for dinner), Mum and Dad’s dementia had been getting progressively worse and the long-term future was going to be challenging.
‘So much so that just a week ago mum told me she had resigned herself to the thought ‘now it looks like we’re probably going together’. And they did.
“That was what God had planned for them – and it was a good plan.”
David and Anne met at a New Year’s Eve party in the early 1960s, around the time he ended a brief career in finance and bought Lower Garrington Farm instead.
The couple’s daughter Helen described it as a ‘step into the unknown’ as she told how David showed Anne the farm before asking her to marry him.
The happy couple then married at Canterbury Cathedral on November 4, 1964, before raising their children alongside running the new family business.
Robert said KentOnline: ‘It was a mixed farm at the time with lots to do, so Dad had very little downtime and was grateful for all the help he got from fellow farmers when he started.’
He explained how David’s passion was growing hops, and he regretted giving it up in the 1990s when it was no longer financially viable.
The father-of-four had studied engineering at Loughborough University, which came in handy when repairing machinery and buildings around the farm.
Shockingly, flowers were left at the remote spot. Phil’s parents, David, 89, and Anne, 82, who both died after their car went over a bridge and ended up upside down in a river
Retirement plan: David bought Garrington Farm, where the couple lived for decades, shortly after leaving a career in finance
Robert added: “They gave us an idyllic life as children growing up on the farm. They would never have left the farm, which will always remain the center of the family.’
Anne was a horse riding enthusiast and was a member of the East Kent Hunt for many years and a volunteer for the Cobbes Meadow Riding for the Disabled Group in Chartham.
A trustee of the charity said Anne was a ‘hugely popular instructor’ among the children they helped and was ‘always happy and smiling’.
David’s best friend, Stephen Twyman, had known the 89-year-old since childhood and said he was a “nice man, quiet and thoughtful.”