It wasn't the age gap that prompted the singer to break it off

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Pictures of Lily Allen and art tycoon Jay Jopling exchanging tender kisses as they lay in the sand on a Caribbean beach looked like the start of a full-blown love affair.

But it wasn’t to be.  Lily, 23, wasn’t bothered about the 22-year age difference but she knew is wasn’t going to work for many reasons – including her feelings for her ex, Chemical Brothers musician Ed Simons, 38.

‘Sadly, Lily finds herself comparing every man to Ed,’ a close confidante tells Now. ‘Although she’s tried to forget and start afresh, she still has feelings for him,as well as a lot of respect and admiration.

‘Lily felt she’d got caught up in a holiday romance. She realised she looked at Jay more as a kind of father figure than a lover, which she said she found “weird”.’

Lily and 45-year-old Jay – who’s amassed a £100 million fortune dealing in modern art – got together in December.

‘On the surface she found his maturity attractive,’ explains our insider, ‘but she didn’t like
the fact that he was on the rebound after separating from his wife [artist Sam Taylor-Wood] in September.’

See the full story about Lily Allen in Now magazine dated 9 February 2009 – out now!