Sue Barker wants Sir Cliff Richard to stop talking about their '80s fling

5 September 2022, 13:36

Cliff Richard on the state of chart music today

By Mayer Nissim

Sue Barker and Cliff Richard's short-lived fling never seems to go away.

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Sir Cliff Richard is the ultimate Bachelor Boy, having decided to focus on his music career rather than settling down and getting married.

That's not to say he hasn't had some high-profile relationships over the years, and it's his brief fling with then-tennis star Sue Barker in the early 1980s that never seems to go away.

That's in part because Sir Cliff hasn't been shy about talking about the relationship, revealing in interviews that he had considered wedding Sue.

"I seriously contemplated asking her to marry me, but in the end I realised that I didn't love her quite enough to commit the rest of my life to her," Cliff has said.

But in her new memoir Calling The Shots: My Autobiography, Sue has said that marriage was never on the cards, and has begged Sir Cliff to stop talking about their relationship.

Sue Barker and Cliff Richard in 1983
Sue Barker and Cliff Richard in 1983. Picture: Getty Images

"The only thing we fell out over was the fact that he kept harping on about me in interviews — ‘I didn’t love her enough to propose,’ and so forth," Sue says in her book, serialised in the Daily Mail.

"This went on and on. It really upset me. In fact, Greg Norman had been much more important in my life than this brief time with Cliff.

"Yet it’s this relationship that is still hanging around my neck. It’s the one that just won’t go away."

Cliff Richard and Sue Barker in 2000
Cliff Richard and Sue Barker in 2000. Picture: Alamy

She asked that Sir Cliff have more respect for her marriage to Lance Tankard and stop talking about their romance.

Sue revealed that she has spoken to Cliff himself about the issue, as well as to his agent and manager, saying "it has been frustrating".

"If someone had told me that my relationship with Cliff would last a few months but I’d still be hearing about it 40 years later, I wouldn’t have gone near him," Sue said.

"Frankly, it looks silly now that he’s still talking about a relationship that was never really more than a friendship."