As Trinny Woodall and Charles Saatchi separate… how 50s females are tough, writes SARAH VINE

As Trinny Woodall and Charles Saatchi separate… how 50s females are tough, writes SARAH VINE

Oh dear. Another one bites the dust. Another high-profile power couple go their separate ways, this time Trinny Woodall and Charles Saatchi.

After a decade together, Trinny has moved out of the home the couple shared, telling her 1.2 million followers, ‘It’s a new dawn, it’s a new day, it’s a new life’ and alluding to things having been ‘a bit up and down’.

Saatchi has been less forthcoming. Asked about the split, he said simply: ‘Sorry, nothing to add.’

But last time he was in this situation, after his break-up with Nigella Lawson, he did admit: ‘If you are a narcissist, as I am, you may find it difficult to hold on to your wives. I never quite comprehend how it is possible to tire of my company, but it clearly is, and with reliable frequency.’

Witty as that statement is, it’s not much use if it doesn’t alter your behaviour. Few will forget that image of Saatchi with his hands around Lawson’s throat during an argument outside a restaurant in Mayfair.

Charles Saatchi (left) and Trinny Woodall (right) at Scott’s restaurant in London in April 2021

Charles Saatchi (left) seen leaving Scott’s Restaurant on Saturday after reports he split from Trinny Woodall

At the time he dismissed it as a playful tiff, although he later accepted a police caution.

Bottom line: Saatchi is a brilliant man in many ways — clever, charming, passionate, successful, entertaining. But he is also, like many brilliant men, hard to live with.

Ego plays a part, of course. You don’t get to become Charles Saatchi without having a very big one, and men with large egos require a certain type of partner, someone who doesn’t mind putting up with them.

Sadly, they don’t always realise this. Instead of being attracted to the sort of woman who is happy to spend entire days stroking their aforementioned, they seem to go for their female equivalent, the feisty alpha.

In Saatchi’s case Nigella and Trinny both fit that mould: not just beautiful and bright, but also ambitious. Crucially, successful in their own right: Nigella with her cookery empire, Trinny with her hugely popular make-up brand, Trinny London, which she built from scratch.

Of course, such women have always existed — but until recently they’ve been the exception, not the norm. The pop stars and actresses, the best-selling novelists, the occasional high-flying City type, the aristocrats and heiresses.

But my generation is different. We were the first to not just break the glass ceiling, but crash through it en masse. And now we’re in our 50s, the options available to us are so much greater than they were for our mothers and grandmothers.

Not that it’s been easy, mind. Many women have had to contend with raising children as well as working, and in effect doing two full-time jobs while only getting paid for one. But as the old saying goes, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and today’s generation of 50-something females are as tough as they come.

We have a work ethic that leaves most millennials rocking in a darkened room. Almost nothing fazes us, our mental and physical pain thresholds are insane. We’ve survived sexism, harassment in the workplace, discrimination, the pay gap. We’ve endured so many hours of mansplaining we could write a PhD on it.

We are everything the anti-women’s rights movement warned about: independent, emancipated and with minds of our own. And if we don’t like something, we won’t put up with it.

Increasingly, it seems, that includes men. Divorce in the over-50s has been rising steadily in recent years, and many break-ups are instigated by women. This is a reversal of the old-fashioned model of the worn-out wife being ditched for a younger, firmer version (although that does still happen).

Basically, women are looking across the breakfast table and thinking: ‘I don’t have to settle for this.’ Whether this is a good or a bad thing I can’t be certain. Good, I guess, that women are no longer trapped in miserable (or even abusive) relationships by a lack of financial independence. Bad, I guess, in that any break-up causes heartache.

But I suppose it’s nice, at long last, to see a little equality in a situation which has, for so long, been stacked so much in favour of men.

And, who knows, it might even make some appreciate what they’ve got — before, like Trinny, she’s packed her bags and moved on.


Jerry Hall’s account is in the black! 

Jerry Hall in H&M and Mugler video wearing a frock similar to Princess Diana’s ‘revenge’ dress

High Street chain H&M launches its collaboration with fashion house Mugler in a video featuring stick-thin models strutting around in clothes that look like strategically placed bandages.

The only one who seems to be enjoying herself is Jerry Hall, wearing a black frock reminiscent of Princess Diana’s infamous ‘revenge’ dress.

‘Oh baby, I feel so good,’ purrs Hall, in that irresistible Texan drawl.

I bet she does: she recently split from Rupert Murdoch in a settlement thought to be worth £50-odd million.

Part of me is pleased that Jeremy Corbyn has been blocked from running as a Labour candidate: he’s not fit for public office.

But part of me is also slightly worried that this might give people the impression that the party has fundamentally changed from the divisive, hate-driven, union-run organisation he presided over. It hasn’t. It’s just wearing a different face.

America suffers another tragic school shooting. Three children under nine are dead, along with a janitor, headteacher and a substitute teacher.

Police released bodycam footage from one of the officers who took down the shooter. It could be something from Call Of Duty or another computer game that glorifies gun violence: only here, the bullets are real, and so is the blood of innocent victims.

Truly chilling.

As someone who has always had terrible eyesight, my greatest fear is losing it. So I read with horror that 628,000 people are languishing on NHS England’s waiting lists for sight-saving operations.

Since 2019, over 550 people have needlessly lost their sight. Meanwhile, the NHS continues to waste hundreds of thousands a year on ‘diversity’ coordinators. Can someone get a grip?

In a video that will surprise absolutely nobody, Andrew Marr ‘reveals’ he is supporting a Labour victory at the next election.

Whatever next? Alastair Campbell reveals he’s not a fan of Boris Johnson?

Anneka Rice attends the Gala Performance of ‘Disney’s Winnie the Pooh: A New Musical Adaptation’ on March 26

TV Chefs fail Anneka Rice…

Poor Challenge Anneka, pulled from the schedules after just two episodes of a reboot, having failed to grab viewers’ imaginations.

It’s not Anneka Rice’s fault: she was as enthusiastic and irrepressible as ever.

It’s the format which, 30 years on, has long been superseded.

Television producers need to do more than rehash old favourites: they have to add something new.

Imagine discovering, as many Dutch women have recently, that the man you chose as your sperm donor fathered over 550 other children.

Horrendous: not only because of the implications for your child, but because their biological father is clearly a monumental creep.

I adore Christopher Biggins — but the fact he’s been caught accidentally ‘liking’ porn on Twitter is proof of what I’ve been saying for years: these sites should be behind a paywall.

Not just to protect children, but also to stop silly old fools like him from embarrassing themselves.

Why pettifoggers deserve an Asbo

I’m a bit worried about this Government ‘crackdown’ on antisocial behaviour. How do you define ‘antisocial’?

A case in point: a friend of mine was reported to her council by a disgruntled neighbour for antisocial behaviour — for having wind chimes in her garden.

I agree certain behaviours are unacceptable, but the danger with these initiatives is that real perpetrators find ways around them, while pettifoggers use them to cause endless trouble.

Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull on This Morning in 2018

Witnessing those scenes at a rally in Auckland where British women’s-rights activist Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull (who goes by the name Posie Parker) was booed, heckled, covered in tomato juice and violently jostled by trans activists, I can’t help wondering: do these people really believe in kindness, tolerance and progress — or are they just a thinly disguised front for misogyny?

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