Sir Cliff Richard ‘afraid to go near kids’ after false claims he molested teen

Sir Cliff Richard says he will no longer be seen with children because he is terrified of being branded a paedophile.

A new documentary covers the pop icon’s ordeal following an allegation of historical sexual assault in 2014.

The 78-year-old admits he wanted the case kept quiet, saying: “If they hadn’t named me I’d have survived it more easily but I’m not going to forget it now.

"Not only was I not charged, I was never arrested. If I was paedophile there’s no way I could hide it 60 years. It’s impossible.”

Sir Cliff Richard 'afraid to go near kids' after false claims he molested teen

Sir Cliff Richard won’t be seen with children for fear of being branded a paedophile
(Image: PA)

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Pal Gloria Hunniford, at his side when he won his privacy case against the BBC earlier this year, reveals he told her: “I will never put my arms around young people again when I’m having photographs taken.”

And he says the false slurs even affect his behaviour near ball boys at Wimbledon.

He will no longer walk through the tunnel from Centre Court to Court One to watch matches.

He tells the documentary: “Since what happened to me, I haven’t gone down there. Because that tunnel is right by the ball boys’ dressing room and I can’t bring myself to be anywhere like that on my own.”

Sir Cliff Richard 'afraid to go near kids' after false claims he molested teen

Sir Cliff says the false slurs even affect his behaviour near ball boys at Wimbledon
(Image: PA)

Sir Cliff also admitted he is hiding secrets about his private life he will never reveal.

The biggest rumour that has plagued Cliff is that he is secretly gay. He never married and he has been sharing his home with former Catholic priest John McElynn for many years.

Cliff tells the documentary: “I like the word enigma. I don’t think people should know everything about you. It doesn’t matter what it is, whether it’s about sexuality or whatever. If I feel it’s too personal then I say so.”

Sir Cliff Richard 'afraid to go near kids' after false claims he molested teen

The veteran pop star opened up in an ITV documentary
(Image: ITV News)

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The ITV show also features his biographer, Steve Turner. Addressing the sexuality rumours, he says: “People would say he’s never married and shared a house with John. Therefore that must be a gay relationship.

“Unless Cliff said that, you’re just left with speculation. He’s said, ‘There’s secrets I’ll take to the grave with me’, and naturally they think – what are those secrets?”

  • The show is on ITV on December 10 at 9pm

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