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Dick Strawbridge - things you didn't know about the Escape to the Chateau star

Dick and Angel Strawbridge Escape to the Chateau Make Do and Mend

To using his bed as an office to starting life on TV on Scrapheap Challenge, there is lots to learn about Dick Strawbridge...

Ever since Escape to the Chateau star Dick Strawbridge and his wife Angel Adoree first set eyes on 18th century Chateau de la Motte Husson, the nation has been transfixed as the couple transform the crumbling French building into a breathtakingly beautiful wedding venue.

After drawing of uprooting their lives in Southend and moving with their young family to France, Dick and Angel have made their wildest dreams come true.

But what else is there to know about Dick Strawbridge - apart from his amazing knack of transforming dilapidated buildings into something stunning, that is?

Most fans of the presenter will know that:

  • He's a retired army colonel
  • He is a keen environmentalist
  • If he wasn't living in France, Dick would like to live in London

Dick Strawbridge: little known facts about the presenter...

1. Dick Strawbridge started his TV career on Scrapheap Challenge

Dick was still a Colonel in the Army when he auditioned to be a contestant on Scrapheap Challenge in 1999. After appearing on the show as contestant, he then became the main presenter. After his success in front of the camera, Dick then went on to appear on Junkyard Megawars and Crafty Tricks of War, It's Not Easy Being Green, Planet Mechanics and Coast.

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2. He's got an MBE

After going tp Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst, Dick enjoyed a hugely successful career in the Army, and after working his way up the ranks, he became a Major in 1991. He was then awarded an MBE in 1993 for his distinguished service in Northern Ireland and promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 1999. He eventually left the army in 2001 to focus on his TV career.

3. He's a great cook

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Dick might be best known for being a TV presenter but he is also an excellent cook. He reached the final of Celebrity MasterChef in 2010, alongside Christine Hamilton and eventual winner, Lisa Faulkner. He impressed the judges so much that one celebrity chef hailed his sauce to be good enough for three Michelin stars. Dick claims this was the only bit of television work Angel has ever watched!

4. He met Angel at a pop-up restaurant

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Dick met his wife, Angel, at one of his pop up restaurants while they were both signed to the same television agent back in 2010. It was love at first sight for the pair and after three and a half years or searching for the perfect chateau, Dick and Angel moved to France with their son Arthur and baby daughter, Dorothy.

More: Things you didn't know about Rowan Atkinson 

5. He is one of seven children

Dick was the third child born to parents Jennifer and George Strawbridge, and although he was born in Burma, he was raised in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. He has four sisters and two brothers, and his mother raised them all single-handedly while his father was away working in the oil industry for months at a time.

6. His bed is his office

Speaking of transforming their 45 roomed chateau over the last five years, Dick said it was hard work and a real labour of love... "Angela learned fast and always looks gorgeous. When the children have gone to bed, Angela and I get into our 'horizontal office' our bed - with our laptops, a glass of wine and a chat about the day."

7. He's slowly adjusting to life in France

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After moving from a two-bedroom flat in Essex to his 45-room chateau in France, Dick has admitted that getting used to life in France has taken time. He told House Beautiful: "You have to be realistic and realise the French have a very different pulse. Shops aren't open on a Sunday and you can't go to a DIY shop in your lunch break during the week. People don't have the same urgency or the timescale."

Dick Strawbridge's Fact File 

Answers to the most frequently asked questions about the presenter...

How old is he?

Dick Strawbridge's age is 60. He was born on 3rd September 1959.

Is he in a relationship?

Dick Strawbridge married wife Angel in 2015.

Does he have kids?

Dick Strawbridge and his wife, Angel, have two children, a son called Arthur and a daughter called Dorothy. Dick also has two grown up children called James and Charlotte from his previous marriage.

Where was he born?

Dick Strawbridge was born in Burma.

Twitter: @dickstrawbridge

Instagram: @strawbridge.dick

We work hard to ensure that all information is correct. Facts that change over time, such as age, will be correct, to the best of our knowledge, at the time of the last article update.

Main pic: Channel 4

Claire Crick
Claire Crick

Claire is Assistant Managing Editor at What To Watch and has been a journalist for over 15 years, writing about everything from soaps and TV to beauty, entertainment, and even the Royal Family. After starting her career at a soap magazine, she ended up staying for 13 years, and over that time she’s pulled pints in the Rovers Return, sung karaoke in the Emmerdale village hall, taken a stroll around Albert Square, and visited Summer Bay Surf Club in sunny Australia. 

After learning some tricks of the trade at websites Digital Spy, Entertainment Daily, and Woman & Home, Claire landed a role at What’s On TV and writing about all things TV and film, with a particular love for Aussie soaps, Strictly Come Dancing and Bake Off

She’s interviewed everyone from June Brown — AKA Dot Cotton — to Michelle Keegan, swapped cooking tips with baking legend Mary Berry backstage at the NTAs, and danced the night away with soap stars at countless awards bashes. There’s not a lot she doesn’t know about soaps and TV and can be very handy when a soapy question comes up in a pub quiz! 

As well as all things soap-related, Claire also loves running, spa breaks, days out with her kids, and getting lost in a good book.