ITV weather presenter Kate Haskell returns to screens following stage four cancer treatment

  • Claire Manning visits Kate Haskell

ITV News West Country weather presenter Kate Haskell is returning to screens this weekend after she was diagnosed with cancer five months ago.

Kate was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma, which she said "turned her world upside down".

But a couple of weeks ago, her final scan showed the cancer was gone.

“To use a really terrible weather analogy I feel like I've been in a tornado," Kate said.

"I feel like I've been whipped up, churned around and now spat out the other side - it's been a journey or two.

“To have this diagnosis was a complete shock, I mean I've been told it's nothing hereditary, it's nothing lifestyle-induced, it's just one of those really rubbish things that happen which is also quite hard to deal with you know like 'why me?'

“But actually after a while, I was thinking 'why not me?' You know cancer affects one in two people why shouldn't it happen to me but like I say I think I always thought I was a bit invisible and that it just wouldn't happen."

Kate had chemotherapy treatment within two weeks of being diagnosed.

“I am so grateful to the NHS but also, in particular, the haematology unit at Torbay Hospital," she said.

"They were so on it, I was stage 4, I really needed treatment very quickly and they gave me the best care and support possible."

While Kate has had the good news her cancer has gone, it will take more time to recover fully.

She said: "One of the scariest things about cancer is how vulnerable it makes you and for a complete self-confessed control freak, that's been the hardest bit.

“That fact that you can't do things with your kids, you can't go to work, you can't do things around the house, you have to be looked after, it was just terrifying for me."

Speaking to ITV News West Country reporter Claire Manning, Kate said: “I think what helped me, what was a huge part of my recovery, was that contact from people so my ITV colleagues, you [Claire] in particular have been amazing, my family and friends.

"You know just getting a text, an email, sometimes there was a little gift or a phone call and it would weirdly happen just at those little moments when you are having your darkest time and it would suddenly remind you of just how much love and kindness there is around you.

“I think what I have learnt from all this from anyone who is going through a similar process is that it is ok to be vulnerable - sink into it, be looked after, it will pass, it will be ok and all too soon you'll be back to hoovering again and wishing someone was doing it for you."

On Saturday 17 March, Kate is back on our screens presenting the weather.

She added: "I can't tell you how excited I am because I had a day last October when I had to phone everyone and basically cancel my life you know cancel work, cancel plans, everything and that was a really awful day and I genuinely thought that was the end of my career.

“I couldn't see a way that I was ever going to be able to get back and how would I look and what would happen but everyone, especially at ITV, has been so great at getting me and encouraging me and supporting me in my decision to come back.

“It feels quite poignant as well because this month will be 25 years since I started with ITV - I'm amazed they've put up with me so long.

“To be able to come back, come back this month, feels just right and I am just so looking forward to it.

“With cancer when in some treatments you lose your hair you do lose a lot of sense of self and 'who am I?' and 'what do I look like and I have made the decision to come back on screen as I am, it is part of who I am right now, it's part of the journey and the process I've been on and I don't feel like hiding it actually.

“It will grow again and actually I might keep it because it is very easy to look after.

"I think I've been through the hard part with the chemotherapy and now mentally it's quite hard, trusting my body again, trusting it's going to be ok I've learnt a lot from others who have been through a similar experience.

“They tell me that the voices get quieter and that it will be ok but yeah it's about being kind to myself, feeling better, feeling stronger and getting back to normal."

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know