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Digital Subscriptions > Attitude > 289 > NIGEL OWENS

NIGEL OWENS

HE ATTEMPTED SUICIDE, SUFFERED FROM BULIMIA AND FELT ASHAMED TO BE GAY, BUT NIGEL OWENS SURVIVED IT ALL AND WENT ON TO REFEREE A RUGBY WORLD CUP FINAL. NOWADAYS, HE SHARES HIS STORY TO HELP OTHERS. THAT’S WHY HE’S OUR HERO

HERO AWARD

So far, the life of Nigel Owens has mostly revolved around mud and men, so mixing in the world of showbiz is unfamiliar territory for a boy from Mynyddcerrig, Carmarthenshire, in Wales. When told he was going to win an Attitude Award, Nigel admits his initial reaction was: “Bloody hell, I’d rather be on the field refereeing 30 massive rugby players.”

But for a man who spends his time in “a very straight and masculine environment,” it’s perhaps understandable that he’d be nervous attending the awards ceremony. “It will be a bit scary to be honest. In the macho world of sport, hardly anyone else is out, so this awards do will be rare for me.”

Despite his nerves, the 46-year-old rugby union official is actually no stranger to winning awards: Stonewall and the Rugby Football Union have recognised his achievements and he was appointed MBE by the Queen in 2016. Nevertheless, he still describes himself as, “genuinely privileged and honoured” to be named Attitude’s Hero.

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About Attitude

This issue, the Attitude Awards special. Featuring exclusive shoots with Nyle DiMarco, Laverne Cox, Matt Lucas, Charli XCX, Greg Louganis and DeRay Mckesson. Plus, Amanda Holden, Erasure, Kylie, Princess Diana, and more.
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