Jake Quickenden on how love's helped him cope with the loss of his dad and brother

When X Factor singer Jake Quickenden went on I’m A Celebrity ­ Get Me Out Of Here! last year, little did he know he’d end up dating winner Carl Fogarty‘s daughter Danielle. The couple hooked up at the show’s wrap party in Australia and have been joined at the hip ever since, moving in together in March.

Now Jake, 26, and Danielle, 23, who live in Cheshire, have decided to let the cameras into their lives for ITVBe’s Seven Days With. Here Jake opens up on how Danielle has helped him deal with the tragedy of losing both his father Paul and 19-year-old brother Oliver to bone cancer.

Are you two brave or just crazy, letting cameras into your home?

Jake: I think we’re brave. I don’t think we’re that crazy! Some people might disagree but we have a lot of fun together and we thought: ‘Why not?’ It’ll give us the chance to show people we’re just normal twentysomethings having a laugh and enjoying each other’s company.

So will there be lots of gratuitous shots of you stripping off, Jake?

J: I’m sure there are a few bits in the morning when I’m making breakfast. I’m not totally nude ­ I do wear my boxers or joggers! ­ But we just wanted to show what we’re like in the house. We eat a lot and we watch a lot of TV, so it might be one of the worst shows ever recorded!

How is living together ­ are you still in the honeymoon phase?

J: We’re still there.
Danielle: We’ve said we¹re always going to be in the honeymoon phase. I don’t think it should ever really go.

How do you keep the romance?

J: Just talking a lot, I think. If one of us has an issue with anything, no matter how little it is, we sort it out. I always want to be smiling and having a laugh. We live for each day and make new memories every single day.

Is Danielle ‘the one’, Jake?

J: I wouldn’t be in a relationship if I didn’t think it was going somewhere. We’re living every day and really enjoying our time now. I’m not going to say we’re getting married in six months but, for me right now, I haven’t been this happy in a long time.

Does Foggy (Carl Fogarty) trust you with his daughter, Jake?

J: Yeah, he’s my friend. I’d never disrespect him or his family.

Jake, how has losing your father and brother affected you?

J: I think life is too short to not do things you want to do and not be with people you want to be with, so that’s what I live by now. Obviously I’m careful and respectful to people, but I’m just having fun and spending every day with Danielle because that’s who I want to be with.

How did it feel to go through those losses?

J: It took me a few years to get my head around it ­ I don’t think I have got my head around it. When you lose people as close to you as that, you never get over it. But you look at life a little differently. I hope they’re proud of me. It’s a shame Danielle never got to meet them but it’s
made me the person I am today. I’m a lot stronger. I live fast and I get grief for it sometimes but I think it’s the best way.

Has Danielle been a great support to you?

J: Yes, Oliver passed away two years ago and it’s been six years since my dad passed, so my initial grief was long gone. I dealt with that with my mum and my big brother Adam together. But Danielle’s always here for me. Sometimes I might have a bad day and go a little bit quiet when I’m thinking of them, but she always understands.

What would they have thought of Danielle?

J: Oh, they would’ve loved her and I tell her that a lot.

Do you worry about getting cancer yourself?
J: The opposite. If you’re going to get it, you’re going to get it. You can’t do anything about it. It’s such an evil disease. Obviously I think people should have regular checks but you can’t live your life being scared of it. My dad and my brother fought this disease with so much determination and they’d want me to enjoy myself. Over the past couple of years it’s been very low for me at some points but there’ve been amazing highs as well ­ going on The X Factor, into the jungle, meeting Danielle and making my music…

Jake’s single I Want You is out now and his Laid Bare tour starts next week. Seven Days With is available to watch now on ITV Player

Sarah Robertson