Victoria Derbyshire made vow to have fun in her remaining years after cancer diagnosis

Paul Gambaccini hits out at Victoria Derbyshire during interview

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Victoria Derbyshire has explained that signing up for I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! last year was one of those “wild” and “unique” experiences she wanted to take part in as part of her newfound attitude towards life. 

I want to say yes to any wild, unique experiences that come my way

Victoria Derbyshire

“After getting through breast cancer six years ago, I made a decision that for however long I have left on this planet, I want to say yes to any wild, unique experiences that come my way,” the mother of two said.

“My day job is serious — I wanted some fun. Which is why I signed up to last year’s series of I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!”

She continued by telling this week’s Radio Times that her children, Oliver,17, and Joe, 14, are huge fans of the show, so when the opportunity came along, there was no chance she was going to decline the offer.

Victoria would commit to every Bushtucker Trial that came her way after having signed up. 

During her time on the show, however, the BBC broadcaster was very vocal about her breast cancer battle as she praised the NHS for saving her life during a heart to heart with fellow campmate Jessica Plummer. 

It was also during their chat when fans learned that Victoria did not have private healthcare insurance.

“No, the NHS. Amazing. NHS are superb. They saved my life. They saved my life, you know,” Victoria gushed.

A few moments later, Victoria found the strength to recall the moment she began to suspect she had breast cancer, mentioning how one of her breasts appeared to be lower than the other.

While she was still relatively calm about the situation after having examined her breast, it had worried her enough to seek professional medical advice that same week.

“So I was going to bed on a Sunday night and getting undressed in the bathroom, I think I’d had a bath, and I just looked in the mirror and my right breast was about two inches lower than my left.

“Not only that, the nipple had become inverted so it was as though someone was pulling it backwards, do you know what I mean? Honestly, I thought, oh, that looks weird, oh, I’ll just sort that tomorrow,” she continued.

“I did not think anything. I didn’t. And five days later it was confirmed that it was breast cancer.”

After her diagnosis, Victoria and her husband Mark Sandell were convinced she was going to die, she said, adding that the pair could barely even speak to each other because they were so devastated by the news. 

“We are talkers, we are open, we are you know, and we just had no words because honestly all I was thinking was I’m going to die,” she recollected. 

“Seriously, I’m going to die.”


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The Manchester native underwent a gruelling six cycles of chemotherapy, and 30 doses of radiotherapy before being told by her doctor that there was no longer any signs of active cancer in her body. 

Victoria notes that her life was turned upside down in a matter of days when she first learned about her diagnosis.

And after overcoming the hurdle of fighting cancer, she’s dedicated her time to using her platform and her voice to urge women all around the world to get screened for the disease. 

She previously told Lorraine: “Women know their own breasts best, so any slight change that looks a bit different from your normal, is just worth getting it checked out.

“I don’t want to alarm anyone, because more often than not, it will be nothing. But it’s just worth getting it checked out.”

Read the full interview in this week’s Radio Times – out now.

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