Clare Balding presents My Animals and Other Family at Shoreditch House Literary Salon

By Paola Bassanese

Clare Balding reads from her autobiography. Picture by Peter Hutton

At Shoreditch House Literary Salon hosted by Damian Barr on 12th September, our national treasure Clare Balding gave us an exclusive preview of her autobiography My Animals and other Family.

Clare won hearts and minds of UK viewers during the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics and she has now graced us with an insight into her formative years.

Growing up surrounded by horses and hounds, Clare admitted that herself and her brother were probably last in the pecking order after their animals in her father’s affections.

Narrating hilarious anecdotes from her childhood, Clare made the Literary Salon roar with laughter as she described how a sausage flew across the breakfast table landing in front of a not amused Queen visiting for (weak, no milk) tea and toast.

Questions from the floor all revolved around Clare’s Olympics and Paralympics commentating experience. She mentioned how the Paralympics have revolutionised broadcasting and changed people’s attitudes towards not only disability but also sexual orientation.

And what about library books? Clare candidly admitted she had been looking in the fiction section for years only to find out she should have been looking in the non-fiction… Read her book.