'I'm not your usual sex
Charlotte Ikonen | Watford Observer - October 31, 2013
Author Helen Fielding recently revealed the real inspiration behind
the character of
Mr Walliker at the Cheltenham Literary Festival
Bushey teacher is inspiration behind Bridget Jones' latest love.
The inspiration behind Bridget
Jones’ new love interest in Helen Fielding’s latest bestselling
novel has been revealed as an unlikely and unassuming 53-year-old
history and games teacher from Bushey.
Andrew Walliker, of Avenue Rise, said he thought Fielding was joking
when she rang him in August asking if she could use him as the romantic
hero in her latest instalment of Bridget’s diaries, Mad
about The Boy.
The father of three, who works at the school Fielding’s son attends,
said he felt flattered to be asked but is “taking it all with a pinch
Fielding, whose son goes to the £16,000-a-year University College
School in Hampstead in north London where Mr Walliker teaches, said she
thought both the character and his inspiration were “a bit like Daniel
Mr Walliker, who used to teach at Ashfield Junior School in Bushey,
said: “It’s all gone over my head.
“I am not the usual sex symbol, and definitely do not have any
similarity to Daniel Craig.”
Mr Walliker said his family were excited when they heard the news, but
have since forgotten about it.
He continued: “When my daughter Amy learned of the role she told me I
am the worst kind of celebrity – being ‘poor and famous’.
“I would agree I’m definitely below the z list.”
Fielding recently revealed the real inspiration behind the character of
Mr Walliker at the Cheltenham Literary Festival.
She said: “I just thought it was a great name. It’s like
‘walloper’ but it’s not and I loved it.”
She said she tried to come up with an alternative, to avoid
“awkward” situations at the school gates, but eventually decided
nothing else would work so rang up the headmaster and then Mr Walliker
to ask permission.
But Mr Walliker said: “It’s all been a lot of fun – and I
haven’t taken it too seriously. The only teasing I have received has
been from fellow teachers but it has died down now.”
Although admitting he has not yet read any of the books in the Bridget
Jones trilogy, Mr Walliker says he will read the latest novel after the
author sent him a copy.
Mr Walliker continued: “To be honest I just feel quite flattered to be
It has been 14 years since the second instalment, Bridget
Jones: The Edge Of Reason, was published in 1999.
The heroine in the latest instalment is no longer a tragic singleton but
a 51-year-old single mother-of-two, since her love interest, Mr Darcy,
died. Living in north London and addicted to her smartphone, the
up-to-date Jones is having an affair with a younger man and coping with