Newly crowned world champion Lewis Hamilton took Pussycat Doll girlfriend Nicole Scherzinger on a romantic tour of his home town, Stevenage, on Wednesday, after returning to the UK with the 2008 F1 World Title in his grasp.
After what was a very public home-coming at the McLaren Technology Centre, in which both Hamilton and Scherzinger were on hand to answer questions from the world’s media, the pair headed off for a quiet night in Stevenage.
The couple were treated to a roast chick dinner at the house of Hamilton’s step-mum, Linda, before checking into the local cinema where they watched the new James Bond film.
The British hero then took his girlfriend on a tour of the town in which he grew up.
Hamilton told The Mirror: “I’m the world’s biggest Bond fan, and this movie is the best one yet. It was nice to go back to my home town, have a night out at the cinema and go back to a few old haunts without being recognised.
“I drove round Stevenage, past the house where I used to live in Peartree Way, past the church where I was baptised and my old primary school. It made me smile.”
“It was just great to see the old house was still standing – even the old posts where the gate used to hang off were still there. It was a tough neighbourhood and a tough place to grow up. There was a lot of suffering around that area, but I was safe enough in the end.”
“Almost opposite was a hostel full of troubled people, including drug dealers, youngsters who had kids at 14. There was always something going on. The police were round there all the time.
“But I wanted to show Nicole for the first time where I grew up and where I came from. It’s not that long ago since I was there because the last time I drove round the town was earlier this year, and I still go to the dentist in Stevenage.”