Inside GB News’ Andrew Neil’s life – younger wife, kids regret and £7m net worth

As the former editor of The Sunday Times and a fixture on BBC for a quarter of a century, Andrew Neil has held a significant role in British media over the course of his career.

In his next step, the broadcaster, 72, has become the chairman of GB News, the first new news network launched in the country since Sky's inception more than 30 years ago.

Following his unexpected BBC exit last year, he said: "I'm delighted to announce I have accepted the post of Chairman of GB News, a new news channel to be launched early in the New Year bringing new perspectives to the news.

"I will also be presenting a new nightly prime-time show on GB News. Watch this space."

Though the network hasn't confirmed any political allegiance, there has been speculation it will be right-leaning.

Ahead of GB News' launch on June 13, Daily Star has taken a look at Neil's private life, from his relatively recent marriage to his upbringing.

Childhood in Scotland

Born in Scotland four years after the end of WWII, Andrew's mum, Mary, worked in the cotton mills, and his dad, James, was a Major in the Territorial Army.

Growing up, he first lived in an inner-city tenement block, before the family moved to a council house.

Describing his parents in his 1996 memoir Full Disclosure, he said they were "plain folk" and "never quite progressed into the middle classes".

His parents supported divisive Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in the 80s.

Performing well in school, he earned a place at Paisley Grammar School, which in turn led to a stint at the University of Glasgow.

There, he discovered his passion for journalism, editing the student newspaper, which was known as the Glasgow University Guardian.

University was also where Neil's politically conservative views took hold, as he joined the Conservative Club and later became the chairman of the Federation of Conservative Students.

Marriage to Susan Nilsson

Andrew married Swedish communications director Susan Nilsson in 2015, announcing their vows by tweeting the "secret's out".

Economics graduate Susan, who is 20 years younger than the TV personality, dated Andrew for five years before they married.

The couple walked down the aisle in the French Riviera, with the wedding taking place near Neil's villa in the town of Grasse.

Deal Or No Deal presenter Noel Edmonds and his wife Elizabeth Davies among their wedding party.

Their pet dog, Molly, featured in their wedding photos, with Nilsson wearing a classic white sleeveless gown and Neil a black two-piece suit.

Before their wedding, Andrew praised his bride-to-be, saying: "She is wonderful, beautiful and intelligent. She keeps me in check."

Long before he fell for Nilsson, Andrew reflected on his status as a bachelor, opening up to Kirsty Young for BBC Radio 4's ‘Desert Island Discs'.

In the 2007 interview, Kirsty asked: "You've never been married and you don't have children. Is that a regret?"

"Yes it is a regret, but I wouldn't count it out," he replied. "There have been times when I've come close to getting married and there have been times when I've been in love, that's just the way the cards have fallen."

Views on fatherhood

Marrying later in life, Andrew has no children, though his tally of godchildren rises "well into double figures" according to The New Statesman.

During the same Desert Island Discs interview, he mused over parenthood, admitting the absence of children from his life was one of his regrets.

"I wouldn't rule out getting married at all, and I'm very fond of children, as all my friends will tell you," he said. "Children and me get on very well together.

"So in a way, I regret what's happened – what I don't regret is getting married, having a family and then getting divorced."

The subject also came up during a 2010 interview with Iain Dale, with Andrew confessing it was a "minus" in his personal life.

"I do regret it," he said. "But you can't have everything, and one of the minuses is not having children and not having had a wife. The plus is that I'm in control of my diary and all the time is for me. It's quite a selfish existence."

Instead of children, Andrew and Susan have three pet dogs, and live between their homes in the South of France and the UK.

Net worth

Last September, Andrew quit the BBC to become Chairman of GB News, spurring a renewed interest in his net worth.

He had been with the network for the past 25 years, saying: "But I leave with no animosity or desire to settle scores. I look back on my 25 years doing live political programmes for the BBC with affection."

According to the Express, prior to his exit, Andrew took home between £170,000 and £174,999 from the network from 2019 to 2020.

In 2015, his company, Glenburn Enterprises, stood at £7.27 million, and BBC records confirm the broadcaster earned over £550,000 in 2016.

He previously suggested his work outside of the BBC made up around 75% of his professional earnings.

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