Actor and director Richard Wilson, has opened up about being gay in a new interview, after he was named by Time Out in a list of influential gay people.

The 76-year-old actor, best known for playing Victor Meldrew in One Foot in the Grave, said his mention at number 80 in the Time Out list was “the most blatant outing”, but that he didn’t mind people people knowing the truth.

Speaking to Weekend magazine, the actor said: “I don’t mind people saying I’m gay, because I am. But I don’t live in a gay relationship. I do find the fact that I don’t have a relationship quite strange. Sometimes I think it’s just the way I’ve ended up and it doesn’t worry me particularly. Other times, yes it does. But sometimes, no…”

Discussing changing career to become an actor when he was 27: “Being single is probably why I go to counselling.  I think when I changed professions it was at a time I should have been settling down or not settling down with someone and I just didn’t seem to have time for that.”

Discussing his change of career to become an actor when he was 27, he said: “I was suddenly prancing around in leotards and fencing and doing ­gymnastics, things I’d never done before.”

He went on to say that he had only had one serious relationship in his life, and that it was with a woman.

Speaking about the relationship when he was 27, and working at Paddington General hospital as a lab technician, he said: “I had a very long relationship with a doctor when I worked at Paddington General. I think if I stayed with her I might not have become an actor.

“I suppose it is fair to say I haven’t had a relationship like that since.”

Richard Wilson is currently directing a play starring Keith Allen and Denise Welch at the Rose Theatre, Kingston.