Farewell to the man whose eyebrows could crush a career

You’re fired!

Nobody fires Nick Hewer. He does however, quit. Lord Sugar’s right-hand man on BBC reality TV series The Apprentice for the past decade, is to stand aside. Tomorrow night’s series finale will be his last outing.

But the eyebrows!

An accomplished “face actor”, his visage held the lemon-sucking grimace of a very clever man in the realm of mortals, the merest curl of a lip or twitch of an eye could crash careers, expose carefully built plans as idiotic ruses. Taken with his Shakespearian asides you had the whole, withering package.

OK, OK. And his CV?

Born in Swindon and educated at a Jesuit school in County Kildare, Ireland, Hewer won a place to study law at Trinity College, Dublin. But his family couldn’t afford for him to take it, so he moved to London, setup a PR firm and became gatekeeper to Lord Alan’s public profile.

Why’s he leaving?

He made headlines last month by saying the contestants were “not the brightest business brains in Britain”. But it’s the long hours, rather than low IQs, which have taken their toll. The 70-year-old said: “I leave with relief, tinged with regret. It takes stamina to follow the candidates week after week, and my stamina is not up to those long weeks.”

And his best bits?

Telling one over-keen contestant they were “all over it like a tramp on chips,” is a good’un. “They took logic and tortured it until it screamed,” and “If you nod your head any longer, I’m going to put you on the back seat of my bloody car,” are worth a mention.

Where can we find him now?

Channel 4, weekdays, 3.10pm, presenting Countdown. Sadly, the put-downs get less of an airing.

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