Paul O’Grady ‘ate drugs’ to save partner from Bangkok airport police

Paul O’Grady has revealed how he once swallowed a stash of cannabis to avoid being caught with the drug at airport customs.

The presenter told how he was forced to take action after his late partner revealed he was in possession of the drug.

At the time, the pair were preparing to board a flight at Bangkok airport.

Given the country’s tough anti-drug laws, the popular TV host decided to take drastic action and swallow the cannabis, in order for he and Brendan Murphy to avoid a lengthy prison sentence.

The revelation features in O’Grady’s new book, ‘Open The Cage, Murphy’ – extracts of which have been published in The Mirror.

Revealing how Brendan found the drugs in his pocket, the star shared his reaction – and the drastic measures he took afterwards.

“I groaned, the film ‘Midnight Express’ instantly springing to mind – complete with a vision of Murphy and me sharing a rat-infested cell with John Hurt.

“‘You bloody fool,’ I said, as I saw to my horror two armed guards walking towards us. There was no sign of a bin and the guards were getting closer.

“There was only one thing for it,” he continued.

“Taking it off him I popped it in my mouth and washed it down with the can of Coke I was holding.”

He said he then flew to Australia “blissfully out of my mind”, describing the feeling as “euphoric”.

Other revelations from the book include stories from the entertainer’s wild past as, he recalls a hectic life of alcohol abuse, drugs and one-night stands.

The Lily Savage star’s tales include that of his time spent working at Madame Jojo’s drag club in Soho – where he once earned £500 by whipping a kinky German tourist in his dressing room.

Murphy – he was O’Grady’s manager as well as partner – died of an inoperable brain tumour in 2005.

Of his own hedonism, the presenter says he was forced to readdress his lifestyle after a heart attack in 2001.

“My clubbing days are over. That dreadful lifestyle I was leading. Out seven nights a week. Out of me mind, smoking, drinking.

“When you get told by Mick Jagger that you’re a bad influence on the Rolling Stones , it’s time to put the brakes on and call it a day.”

Last month, the Merseyside born star paid an emotional and comic tribute to his fellow Liverpudlian Cilla Black at the star’s funeral in the city.