Steps singer Ian H Watkins: My bandmate Lisa used to help me stay in the closet

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Steps singer Ian H Watkins has credited his bandmate Lisa with helping to deflect questions about his sexuality.

Despite rumours at the time of the band’s success, the pop singer remained in the closet for years – until he finally came out as gay in 2007.

Speaking to RUComingOut, the Steps singer credited fellow singer Lisa Scott-Lee with helping him avoid questions during press interviews.

He said: “I don’t actually remember sitting down and telling Lisa [I’m gay], it was just something that I didn’t feel I had to say out loud.

“We just had a cracking time going out dancing and clubbing and it was just something that was unsaid but know. I vaguely remember us talking about people we fancied but it wasn’t like, ‘by the way, I’m gay’.

“We have an amazing connection, Lisa and I, and I guess that reflects that.”

He continued: “When we did interviews with magazines like Smash Hits and TV Hits I would always get asked questions about girlfriends and who I fancied.

“That was when Lisa would dive in and have my back. She would chip in and take the attention away from me.”

He told the magazine: “I felt massive pressure to keep my sexuality a secret but I was not alone. I had a brief relationship with a member of a boyband, but we were careful and the media never found out.

“During my time in Steps I had dates with other singers, and actors, and some still haven’t come out to this day. It’s amazing that they have kept their sexuality secret all this time.”