Tess Daly, 49, hits back at ageism facing women on TV - 'Getting older is a luxury'

Francesca Specter
Yahoo Style UK deputy editor
Tess Daly says she is happy to be getting older. [Photo: Getty]

Tess Daly has spoken out against the judgement women of a certain age face in the television industry.

The 49-year-old ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ presenter spoke in a candid interview about the double standards facing women and men in the industry – and why she is happy to be ageing.

“Men don’t have to defend their right to still be working in their 40s or 50s,” she told The Mirror.

“It’s ridiculous because I feel I’m just coming into my stride. It’s the point where you’re more worldly wise, you’ve got more life experiences and you’re peaking as a woman.”

Tess, who is married to fellow presenter Vernon Kay, 44, insists what matters is her wellbeing and enthusiasm, rather than her numerical age.

“My life is defined by how I feel. I honestly really couldn’t care less about my age as long as I can jump out of bed with enthusiasm and be a fit, active mum for my kids. That’s what really matters.’

She adds: “I’m just grateful to be alive, frankly.

“I’ve had friends who’ve died in their 30s and 40s from cancer, so who am I to complain about getting older? ‘It’s a luxury. I hope I keep getting older. It’s sad that in this day and age women are still judged on their age.”

Tess isn’t the only woman in the public eye to complain of ageism.

Madonna, who turned 60 this year, previously told Harper’s Bazaar: “Did somebody go to Pablo Picasso and say, ‘Okay, you’re 80 years old. Haven’t you painted enough paintings?’ No.'”

“I’m so tired of that question. I just don’t understand it. I’ll stop doing everything that I do when I don’t want to do it anymore.”

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