Sir Trevor McDonald reported on many big stories during his acclaimed career in television news – but he says nothing compares to the ‘immense, international’ nature of the coronavirus pandemic.

The former presenter of ITV’s News at Ten has been speaking to his former co-presenter Julie Etchingham on the latest episode of the ITV News podcast¬†Coronavirus: What You Need To Know.

“I don’t remember a story which has so internationally involved us all”, Sir Trevor told Julie.

“We are connected much more than we ever thought. We’re anxious to hear what’s going on all over the world.”

Since retiring from presenting the news in 2008 – receiving a series of awards along the way – Sir Trevor continues to present documentaries and spends a lot of his weekends watching sport. But with the lockdown, all of that is on hold right now.

Aged 80, Sir Trevor is in among the many over 70s advised by government to be particularly stringent in following social distancing measures – so how is he coping being at home?

“It is very, very strange to go through a week knowing that you have so few things which are absolutely planned. It’s a bit difficult having all the time on your hands.

“In my personal case, the lack of social contact and having to stay in a lot is at times fairly depressing, really. You just have to try and find ways of dealing with it.

“I must confess I’m not too sure I’ve done terribly well for finding those ways!”

Sir Trevor says a glass of wine at the end of the day “is obligatory” – and he is “watching all the films on television”.

“Luckily, I still have a great passion for reading”, he adds.

As a big sports fan, Sir Trevor said the postponement of all competitions has left a big gap in his week.

“I usually prop my weekends around watching sports”, he said.

“I hit a very low point when it was announced that Wimbledon was cancelled. I hope I’m not being too awful in saying this, but I thought this was kind of close to the end of a part of civilisation as we know it!”

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