Alison Hammond recalls growing up with her ‘dark’ father who smuggled drugs and carried a shotgun

Alison Hammond has detailed growing up with her late father, drug smuggler Clifford, whom she described as “seedy.”

The This Morning host, 46, opened up about her father – who passed away in 2020 – and his less than savory lifestyle in her book You Must Laugh, serialized in The Mirror.

And in her memoir, the star recalled spending time with Clifford, who was separated from her late mother Maria, and talked about how he was both “respected and feared” within his community in Jamaica.

Memories: Alison Hammond detailed growing up with her late father, drug smuggler Clifford, who she described as “seedy”

Alison’s mother, who was born in Birmingham, only found out that Clifford, who imported trucks between the UK and the Caribbean, was married and had children when she was pregnant with Alison.

And although she was raised alone by her mother, Alison was still in touch with her father and told of a time when he visited him from Jamaica and came straight from the airport to her mother’s house.

She said, “One day he came straight from the airport to our house. Do you see these boots?! he said, grinning at his feet. “These are the most expensive pair of snakeskin boots in the world.” “Why are they so expensive?” my mother asked. He bent down, unzipped a boot, and a load of weed fell out.

Dad: The This Morning presenter, 46, opened up about her father - who died in 2020 - and his less-than-hearty lifestyle in her book You've Got To Laugh, featuring serialized excerpts in The Mirror

Dad: The This Morning presenter, 46, opened up about her father – who died in 2020 – and his less-than-hearty lifestyle in her book You’ve Got To Laugh, featuring serialized excerpts in The Mirror

‘That was my father! Cliff was charismatic and charming, but he was mischievous. He would illegally bring drugs into the country as long as people could get away with them before introducing sniffer dogs and body scans at the airport.”

Despite her fondness for her father, Alison confessed that she was “ashamed to admit” that the rolls of cash he gave her mother on his visits were probably earned from “smuggling ganja,” with the star remarking: “So seedy!’

In her book, Alison – who rose to fame with Big Brother in 2002 – explained how Clifford “definitely had the lifestyle” showering her with gifts and treating her to Chinese takeaways, which was considered a “luxury” at the time.

And while she was treated like a princess by Clifford, the businessman was treated like a “king” in his native Jamaica, with his powerful presence making the residents “restless” – most likely because of the shotgun he was carrying.

Childhood: In her memoir, the star recalled spending time with Clifford, who was separated from her late mother Maria, and shared how he was both

Childhood: In her memoir, the star recalled spending time with Clifford, who was separated from her late mother Maria, and shared how he was both “respected and feared” in Jamaica

Story: While raised by her mother alone, Alison was still in touch with her father and told about an occasion he visited from Jamaica (pictured with Mama Maria)

Story: While raised by her mother alone, Alison was still in touch with her father and told about an occasion he visited from Jamaica (pictured with Mama Maria)

She said: ‘You could tell by the way people spoke of him that he was respected and feared in the community. They called him Mr. Hammond and you could see the discomfort in their eyes when they spoke to him. It doesn’t surprise me either, because he drove everywhere with a huge shotgun under his pickup truck. He didn’t mess around.’

Clifford died in June 2020, just four months after Alison’s beloved mother Mary lost her battle with liver and lung cancer.

The TV host shared her grief on Instagram at the time because she hadn’t spent much time with him and was unable to attend his funeral.

She wrote: ‘This is my real father, Clifford Hammond, who passed away last week in Jamaica.

“I’m sad that I can’t attend his funeral and sad that he wasn’t as much a part of my life as I would have liked…but I still feel a sense of loss and emptiness. Sleep well daddy, love leaves a memory that no one can steal. REST IN PEACE.’

Meanwhile, on Thursday, Alison shared a loving tribute to her mother Mary on the anniversary of her death.

The TV personality took to Instagram to celebrate her late mother’s death two years ago from liver and lung cancer.

Alongside a photo of her beloved mother in her early years, Alison wrote: ‘Mom Two years today you left me and the pain never left my heart.

So sad: Meanwhile, on Thursday, Alison shared a loving tribute to her mother Maria on the anniversary of her death

So sad: Meanwhile, on Thursday, Alison shared a loving tribute to her mother Maria on the anniversary of her death

She continued: ‘I love you and miss you sooo much. I hear and feel you all the time. My Angel Mary ❤️❤️❤️’

The star was inundated with supportive messages from her close friends and celebrity friends.

Holly Willoughby wrote: ‘Ah Alison… I send you loads of love ❤️’

While colleague Ruth Langsford wrote: ‘Oh dear…I’m sending you so much love and one of my big hugs. Your mother was and always will be. SO proud of you ❤️’

Good friend Kate Lawler wrote: ‘What a beautiful picture of your mama. She’ll be so proud of all you’ve accomplished since she passed baby x ️’

Alongside a photo of her beloved mother in her early years, Alison wrote: 'Mom Two years today you left me and the pain never left my heart.

Alongside a photo of her beloved mother in her early years, Alison wrote: ‘Mom Two years today you left me and the pain never left my heart.

Alison’s mother, who was from Guyana, died tragically in January 2020 and the star’s Dad, who lives in Jamaica, also died in June of the same year.

Announcing the sad news, the former Big Brother star shared a series of photos of her mother — one of which showed her smiling wearing a yellow top as she sat on a hospital bed.

Alison wrote, “I dedicate Valentine’s Day to my beautiful, wonderful Mother Mary who passed away from liver and lung cancer.”

Sweet: When she announced the sad news, the former Big Brother star shared a series of photos of her mother

Sweet: When she announced the sad news, the former Big Brother star shared a series of photos of her mother

“Yesterday my family and I celebrated her wonderful life and laid her to rest in a beautiful ceremony that she would have been proud of.

“Thank you Mama for giving me the strength to move forward knowing you are well and now with God in Heaven. I will always remember you and try to make you proud. I love you mom.’

The star added on Twitter: ‘RIP my best friend and Living Angel, please come to my dreams.’

Alison wrote: 'I dedicate Valentine's Day to my beautiful, wonderful Mother Mary who passed away from liver and lung cancer'

Alison wrote: ‘I dedicate Valentine’s Day to my beautiful, wonderful Mother Mary who passed away from liver and lung cancer’

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