It was naturally an emotional moment for Kelly on Long Lost Family when host Davina McCall gave her the news she’d been waiting years to hear.
The team had finally found her biological father, Richard, who was eager to meet her. In Davina’s words, he was ‘really, really happy’.
35-year-old Kelly had been searching for Richard ever since she discovered the man who raised her wasn’t her biological father.
— ITV (@ITV) August 23, 2017
Speaking with host Nicky Campbell, Richard was also overcome with feelings as he learned of his daughter’s existence for apparently the very first time.
Richard and Kelly’s mum, Joanne, hadn’t seen each other since their summer romance 35 years ago. They’d met through a seasonal job in Scotland, but Richard returned to London after Joanne became pregnant.
Check out Richard’s reaction below:
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Richard admitted he knew Joanne thought she might have been pregnant, but didn’t realise he had a child. He’d assumed she hadn’t actually been pregnant when he didn’t hear from her.
He became visibly upset as he apparently realised his own mother knew about Kelly’s birth, but had decided to keep this from him.
The guy on #longlostfamily totally did a runner on his summer fling and now he's blaming his dead mother. Classy, times two.
— Tim (@TimForde) August 23, 2017
Choking back tears while looking at his daughter’s photograph, Richard said:
I can’t wait to meet her and make up for lost time. It’s incredible.
However, some viewers just weren’t buying Richard’s story, accusing him of lying and producing ‘crocodile tears’ for the camera…
this geezer is lying "she said might have been pregnant" – who would just ignore that #longlostfamily
— Rory Eley (@roryeley) August 23, 2017
It’s quite hard to believe he could have brushed aside Joanne’s potential pregnancy, not imagining this could result in a living child.
The couple were very young at the time, but it’s strange to think the possibility never crossed his mind in the years since.
To make matters even more suspicious, Joanne has a rather different recollection of the way their fling ended…
#long lost family . He knew and everyone knows he knew . Really forced & no mention of his current family
— jesuiseu ??❄️ (@48notwrong) August 23, 2017
As a teenager, Joanne told Richard she was pregnant and remembered him being happy at first, before quickly becoming impossible to contact.
Joanne tried to phone him numerous times to let him know about Kelly, but his mum picked up every time. Was his mum really just so interfering, or is Richard simply shifting the blame?
Long Lost Family..i am not convinced this guy did not know his daughter existed, he looks so guilty.. just be honest now
— KAT (@katrinahot1) August 23, 2017
To be fair on Richard, he now admits he wishes had tried harder to find out if Joanne had really been pregnant, and Kelly says she doesn’t bear any grudges.
Lets hope the father and daughter can move forward and make up for lost time as they get to know each other.
Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.