I knocked on doors, selling grossly overpriced door and window locks.
We’re on TV and felt the time was right to downsize.
We thought, “Do we really need this hassle anymore?
• Steve Backshall: 'My starting pay with the BBC was bonkers' • Claire Sweeney: 'I've bought lots of property, Turkey was a disaster' I bought a prime-condition Aston Martin Virage Volante in 1998 for £38,000 but I think it cost me as much again in maintenance and repairs.
It was unreliable, untrustworthy and never started.
We’re currently filming our own chat show Steph and Dom Meet…
that goes out in September and having enormous fun. I’m sort of in charge of getting money in and she’s in charge of getting rid of it – which she does very well!It was stressful but investments to my mind are just like organised gambling, as shares can go up as well as down. We had a view to refurbish the cottages to help towards running costs because it’s expensive to run and we’ve ended up with a small hotel doing very well. It’s a Grade I, Lutyens-designed property built in 1911, with 17 bedrooms and 63 windows. The gardens were nothing but overgrown hedges, weeds and trees with hardly a flower, so we’ve invested literally millions.The house was fairly neglected and while the cottages in the compound weren’t quite derelict, given another five years they would be. We always played with property and made a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Nobody wanted to buy it and again, life has changed for us.I grew up in a village called Westbere and then spent 10 years living in the New Forest.We owned a family steel business run by my father, while my mother ran the household and looked after the children.Buying a hell of a lot of shares with my family in a steel mill in 1996.