AT HOME WITH HER PARTNER ROD WESTON
TALKING FRANKLY ABOUT LIFE AFTER A NEAR FATAL CAR CRASH
Probably best-known as the former wife of two of the world's rock music legends - George Harrison and Eric Clapton - ex-model turned photographer Patti Boyd has put the past behind her and is looking forward to a very happy future.
Having recently survived a near fatal road accident while in Spain with her partner, property developer Rod Weston, Patti says: "I have ben so near death, life is even more important now."
Patti and Rod sopke to HELLO! from her riverside home. Although she has been married twice before, Rod has never been married but he has been in "a long live-in situation".
Says Rod: "I'm an optimistic person looking forward to the future. The past is past and you can't change it."
And, adds Patti: "I've found happiness on a different level. There are different forms of love and I think we love different people in different ways. I don't think any form of love can be repeated."
Patti, you have a beautiful flat here in London. Has London always been your home?
Patti: "No, after my divorce I thought it would be a good idea to live in London near my friends. I used to live in the countryside. I had no idea what I was looking for, so, after searching for different sorts of living accommodation, I came across this flat. I've got quite a few friends who live here in London and I find it really enjoyable. It's completely different from living in the country. I do miss growing flowers and herbs but otherwise I enjoy living here."
Do you live alone, and is there someone special in your life?
P: "I live with my two cats, Polo and Molly. And my partner Rod Weston lives in Kensington."
Rod: "I was brought up in London so you could say I was born and bred here. I'm the youngest of three children and my parents still live here in London."
How did the two of you first meet?
P: "We met about seven years ago in Sri Lanka. I'd gone there with a girlfriend and Rod was there with a bunch of other people. We all met up and remained friends. Then about 18 months ago we got together on a different level and became even better friends!"
R: "While in Kenya."
P: "Yes, we re-met while I was staying with Donna Hurt and Rod came to visit whil I was there."
Rod, what was your first impression of Patti? After all, you must have heard of her before meeting her.
R: "I remember how natural and nice she was."
You were a model in the sixties. How did you first get into modelling?
P: "I was working for Elizabeth Arden in the hairdressing department and somebody from a magazine came in and asked whether I'd ever considered being a model. It's the classic story - I said no and she told me to go along to see her, which I did. We took some photographs and I was introduced to an agent.
"For the first three months it was quite hard work, walking round and seeing photographers, and then eventually I started getting some jobs and my career took off.
"I had an interview, for what I thought was a commercial, but it turned out to be for the Beatles's film A Hard Days Night. I panicked because I never wanted to be an actress but I didn't have a speaking part, I was just a schoolgirl. It was very embarrassing to meet the Beatles dressed as a schoolgirl - I so wanted to be glamorous and grown up."
It was on the set of the film that you met George Harrison, who later became your first husband. What do you remember most about him?
P: "I thought he was very good looking and charming. All of the Beatles were so glamorous and it was exciting to meet such famous people."
Do you remember your first date with him?
P: "I was so very young and I never expected him to ask me out, so it was quite a shock and a thrill.
"Actually, I said no the first time I don't know why. I suppose it was loyalty because I had a boyfriend at the time and I didn't think he would like me going out with someone else.
"About two weeks later we had to go back and do some more filming. By that time I thought maybe I was missing an opportunity and I might regret this for the rest of my life, so I said yes."
While you were married to George, his friend Eric Clapton fell in love with you. How did you cope with this situation?
P: "We both saw a lot of Eric at that time and when George and I split up I started seeing more of him. We then lived together for a while before we got married."
Both George and Eric wrote songs to you. George wrote Something and Eric wrote Wonderful Tonight and Layla. Did you find this a great tribute or embarrassing? After all, it brought their feelings out very much into the open.
P: "I thought it was a great tribute and an honour. I was very flattered."
R: "Especially when they are such good songs."
P: "Yes, such beautiful songs."
How does Rod cope with the stories of your past?
R: "I don't think I can compete on the song-writing level!"
P: "But he does very well in other ways."
R: "They're a difficult act to follow. But I think other people are more aware of it than I am. Other people put more into it than there really is - everyone's got a past."
Eric at one time blamed the breakup of your marriage on the fact that you couldn't have children. How do you feel about that?
P: "I think time is a very good healer for a problem like that. It happens for a lot of women - they suddenly realise that they can't have children. And it's so disappointing because one grows up thinking that you naturally will be able to have children and when it doesn't happen it's a shock.
"It takes years of happiness to get over it but then in time everything heals. I just felt that it wasn't meant to be so that's all there is to it."
Rod, is Patti a strong character?
R: "There's a very soft shell, but underneath there's a strong person now. And the years have helped that, but not strong in a bad way."
Are you still friends with Eric?
P: "He's a really good friend. We meet and we have lunch. he's very kind and a very romantic person."
Was it a traumatic time for you when his son Conor died so tragically last year?
P: "All his friends tried to help him in which ever way they could when Conor died. When I heard the news I hoped that someone was telling me a lie but I thought this lie would be too awful, it had to be true. It's too horrific to comprehend. This beautiful little boy suddenly, so suddenly, gone."
You both love to travel. What have you got planned for the future?
R: "We try to go to different places. I wouldn't go so far as to say I'm a nomad but I love travelling. I've travelled a lot over the years - I like the experiance of it, different places, diferent environments, different cultures."
P: "We're hoping to go to Bhutan in October and do a lot of trekking and take some photographs. It's very unspoilt and very few people go there, and I just think it sounds very interesting."
Do you have any regrets in life? And do you think the experiances you've had have made you stronger?
P: "No regrets because I think everything I've done has gone to make me what I am today. I look back in order to look forward, but I don't look back longingly.
"What's happened to me has made me a stronger person and, through a lot of struggle, more confident."
What about the two of you?
P: "I feel very calm and relaxed and Rod is very easy to be with. There are no pressures and we enjoy the same things."
R: "I'm enjoying life, having a great time together and sharing it with somebody. I don't think you necessarily think of it as being that finite. When it's good, it's great for as long as it lasts."